Skip to main content

Full text of "Kids Sure Rite Funny"

See other formats


S<OU 158395 


Call No. $H -S I V. Ti K Accession No. Cn - \1 ?^ ^ 


Title \ 

This book should be returned on or before the date last marked below. 


Books by Art Linkletter 

People Are Funny 
Kids Say the Darndest Things 
The Secret World of Kids 
Confessions of a Happy Man 
Kids StUl Say the Darndest Things 
Kids Sure Rite Funny 

Kids Sure Rite 


A Child's 

Garden of Misinformation 



Illustrated by Whitney Darrow, Jr. 




All rights reserved under International and Pan American Conventions. 

Published by Bernard Geis Associates; distributed by Random House, 

Incorporated, in New York and simultaneously in Canada by Random 

House of Canada, Limited. 

Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: 62-16685 
Manufactured in the United States of America 
First Printing 

This book is dedicated to the School Kids of America. 
In their running leaps at the high-jump bar of knowl- 
edge, they sometimes come a cropper and some of 
their best "croppers" are included in this book but 
thank goodness they always dust themselves off, set 
the bar a notch higher, and try, try again! 



















viii Contents 







JL/ ID YOU KNOW that a bunkhouse is where cowboys 
go to tell how brave they are, and other such bunk? 
Or that the ash around volcanoes was once hot Java? 
That "double jeopardy" means being arrested by 
more than one jeopardy sheriff? Or that a baby born 
today can expect to have a longer gevity than his 

Somewhere in America are some earnest little 
scholars who are convinced that all these lopsided 
and off-center bits of knowledge are literally true. In 
fact, these youngsters wrote every one of them as 
answers on examination papers at school much to 
the delight of their teachers. 

I've been on a laughing jag ever since I started in 
as your editor of this book, which is a silly sampler 
of hundreds of the funniest classroom boners, bloop- 
ers and howlers ever written. Most of this joyful crop 


x Foreword 

of educational absurdities was lovingly harvested by 
a Missouri schoolteacher, Harold Dunn. When I first 
sat down to read Mr. Dunn's manuscript, I thought 
he'd done a marvelous job. I was so carried away that 
I fattened the manuscript with several dozen of my 
own classroom favorites that teachers, listeners to my 
"House Party" show, and readers have been sending 
me over the years. 

It isn't easy to define a boner, any more than a 
comedian can explain exactly why a certain gag gets 
big laughs, but let's try: 

Boners are far more than a childish slip of the pen 
on examination day. They are never intended to be 
funny they just turn out that way. 

A kid in school is like a chemist in a laboratory. 
He's constantly testing and experimenting, combin- 
ing what he knows with other things that seem to 
make sense. Ordinarily the mixture is a success but 
sometimes the result is a boner that blows up and 
rocks the lab with laughter. 

Here's what I consider a perfect example of a 
child's mind at work, as he attempts to combine 
what teacher says with what he is beginning to sense 
of the vast, confusing world around him: 

"Once there was this Nathan Hale who was a spy. 
But not a onrinary spy. He was a good one. Even 
when cought he knew what was right, so he died 
rather happily ever after." 

Obviously the young writer of this little essay had 

Foreword xi 

been taught that Nathan Hale had died gloriously 
and heroically. But he didn't quite understand what 
this meant, so he came up with that unique expres- 
sion about dying happily ever after. I suspect that 
afterward the boy thought it over, sensed that people 
don't really die happily ever after, and hedged a little 
by saying that Hale died "rather" happily. No adult 
could possibly write such a thing, because only the 
eager, half -tutored mind of a child could conceive 
of it. 

Here's another highly imaginative idea that might 
never occur to a grownup: 

"Eating onions gives some protection from the 
breathing of others eating onions. But the only sure 
way is for mankind to get together and agree to de- 
stroy all his stockpile of eatable onions." 

I wonder how the United Nations would feel about 
an onion disarmament program. . . . Personally, I'm 
all for keeping our onion stockpile as a strong deter- 
rent. In fact, maybe we'd be wise to set up a testing 
program immediately on the most breathtaking 
weapon of all garlic! 

Before I put down my editor's pencil, I'd like to 
say one last and heartfelt word about that eternal 
and unchanging creature, the child. Most parents, 
I've found, are fairly sophisticated about the basic 
theories of child psychology. They're far different in 
their attitudes as compared with their own grand- 
parents, who were shocked when Sigmund Freud 

xii Foreword 

first described the infant as an egomaniacal tyrant, 
full of rages, hungers and dark impulses. Today 
we've come to accept the idea that from earliest 
childhood, we are bundles of frustrations and de- 
structive urges, all held down none too securely 
under the lids of our ids. 

But what can we say of the sweet, trusting inno- 
cence of childhood ... its shy charm ... its bright, 
quicksilver beauty . . . the dreaming wonder in a 
child's eyes? These are the great themes of the wisest 
of all knowers of the human heart, our poets. Only a 
Carl Sandburg can sing of the laughter of children 
who tumble barefooted and bareheaded in the sum- 
mer grass. Only a Shelley can remind us what it's like 
to be a child. . . , "It is to have a spirit yet streaming 
from the waters of baptism; it is to believe in love, to 
believe in loveliness, to believe in belief; it is to be 
so little that the elves can reach to whisper in your 
ear; it is to turn pumpkins into coaches, and mice 
into horses, lowness into loftiness, and nothing into 
everything, for each child has its fairy godmother in 
its soul." 

It is in this spirit that we should journey through 
these pages . . . and I can think of no better guide to 
set our feet upon the path than one of my favorite 
poets, William Blake, who was so very like a child 
at heart himself. It was Blake who sang of the merry 
innocence of the young with these lines: 

Foreword xiii 

Piping down the valleys wild, 
Piping songs of pleasant glee, 
On a cloud I saw a child. 

So let's be off on our skylark of laughs with the 
school kids, who are eager to tell you all about such 
famous people as Robinson Caruso, the opera singer 
who was shipwrecked, and that great French fashion 
designer, Plaster of Paris. You'll also learn such fas- 
cinating things as what turtles think about their 
gooey beds, why grasshoppers are so jumpy, why 
the Egyptians all wanted to be mommies, and how 
to undress a stranger properly. You're in for fun every 
step of the way, because Kids Sure Rite Funny! 



The Best They Is in 

IT hadn't been for the need to pursue groceries 
as well as knowledge back in my college days, I 
might today be parading across some campus quad- 
rangle in cap and gown as Professor Arthur Gordon 
Linkletter, Doctor of Literature. English was always 
my favorite subject, and the thought of becoming a 
professor was tremendously appealing. After all, it 
offered the daily challenge of ideas in the classroom 
. . . the respect of the community . . . and something 
called "tenure/' which is an educator's delicate way 
of describing a steady job. But before this dream of a 
well-rounded education could come true, I had to 
find a way of providing a few well-rounded meals. I 
found I could earn the money I needed after classes 

4 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

by making announcements on a local radio station. 
What began that way as a temporary sidetracking of 
my academic career became the career itself, and my 
visions of an ivy-clad Linkletter gradually faded 
away. My old love for our language is still there, 
however, and I wince whenever some sharp-eared 
listener fires a postcard at me, catching me up in 
some technical slip I've made in English on the air. 

If college graduates still lose their way occasion- 
ally in the mazes of English grammar, you can 
imagine how bewildered our school kids can be. 
Learning to write compositions is almost as hard as 
learning to talk all over again. As one pupil put it, 
"There is a difference between being able to talk 
orally and writenly," 

Let's examine a few samples of "talking writenly," 
starting with a free-swinging little sermon on that 
awful word "got": 

"There is no use even ever saying Got. Like some 
say, we have Got a pencil. It would be more right to 
say, we have a pencil. I for one know never to say 
G that word anymore/' 

If you're ever mixed up on the use of "can'" and 
"may," here's a tip from a little boy who understands 
the difference quite well: 

"Can means we can do anything we want to and 
nobody is going to stop us, and may means maybe we 
better ask anyway." 

The Best They Is in English 

The English may be slightly fractured, but the idea 
comes through in one piece in this lesson on sen- 
tences: "When you are I, he, she, or they, you are in 
the subjective and are doing things. But when you 
are me, him, her, or them, you are in the objective 
and they are doing it back to you/' 

6 Kids Sure Rite Funny/ 

If you're at all hazy about that old English buga- 
boo, the double negative, hang on. Here are some 
thoughts that will leave you only slightly worse off 
than before: 

"Anyone that says not and no in the same sentence 
is really saying yes. And that goes for n't too." 

"If you are remarking 1 don't want to nohow' you 
are actually remarking 1 do/ This can lead to a mis- 

Punctuation is another puzzler, but few kids are 
quite as confused as the little boy who defined it 
this way: 

"Good punctuation means not to be late/' 

Another boy, who does his outside reading in 
comic books, wrote this: 

"Sometimes punctuation marks all speak of the same 
thing, like #%*! and & are all saying darn you." 

The Best They Is in English 7 

Let's leaf through a few more copybooks for 
thoughts on the art of "talking writenly": 


Allthough I am rather weak in biology, I am the best 
they is in English class. 


* * 

When a person is in too much of a hurry to say 
pound, he can say Ib. 


If I should say period, what I mean would depend 
on if I said it in English or history. 


Some co-pupils I have known never knew when to 
use a question mark? 

Compounds can be studied in either chemistry or 

Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

In order to write a compound sentence, a person 
must have at least one coma. 

* * 

People have sex while nouns have genders. 

* * 

Don't use commas, that aren't necessary. 

* * 


"Don't" is a contraption. 

Italics are what the Italians write in. 

The Best They Is in English 9 

You put a question mark at the end of a sentence to 
show that your voice should go up? 


* * 

Will I pass English this year and why not? 


* * 


"At the bedside," is a prepositional phrase. 


* * 

An adverb is an added verb for the purpose of who 
knows why? 


* * 

(Give the antonym of upright.} 


* * 

(What is the antonym of woe?) 


* * 

In saying do not in a qwick way, you may say don't. 
Of course it takes some time to learn when to say 
it, so it is about six of one and one for all. 


Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Here is some English to be known. Whom instead of 
who. Never ai'nt. Diagraming also. 

I am rather unclear about sing sang and sung. If 
I do it right now I know it is that I sing. But 
if I did it say yesterday I am not clear what 
I did. 

The Best They Is in English 
Poultry has a singular, known as chicken. 


* * 

Radium's plural is radius. 

(Give the antonym of shiftless.) 

12 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

We should always say deer when we mean two or 
more deers. 

* * 

We must remember that a p-h is often used in place 
of an f . For some people go through life entirely 
never learning how to spell correctly such words 
as phoebia. 

One of the important things to decide in studying for 
an English test is whether to figure out the ques- 
tions to be asked or to study for answers and not 
be sure of the questions. 

Most words are easy for me to spell once I get the 
letters right. 


< * 

is an asterick. It is a reminder to go look some 
place else if you want to know the whole truth. 

The Best They Is in English 


To write a story in the first person means to write 
it like Adam would. 

Most longer words can be abrevated. 

* * 

The plural of monument is biument. But they are so 
costy we don't need to learn the word for so 

14 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

When we have finished resting we have lain. No one 
has ever laid (at least in this class). 

(Use the word "assume" in a sentence.) 

I would just assume be grown as like I am. 


* * 

Upon hearing the phrase "spinning a yarn" we must 
stop and think. Think weather it is about sewing 
or story telling. 


How To Undress 
a Stranger 

OF my favorite characters in literature has 
always been Mrs. Malaprop, that hilarious lady in 
Sheridan's immortal play of the 18th century, The 
Rivals. Mrs. Malaprop made so many blunders in 
the use of words that we now use her name to 
describe the type of mistakes she made with the 

Some of the funniest malaprops ever written, how- 
ever, did not come from the pen of Sheridan and 
were quite unintentional. They were scrawled out on 
copybook paper by our school kids, like this little 
pointer on etiquette: 

"I try to always be formal but polite when un- 
dressing a stranger." 



Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Kids are natural malaproppers, because so many 
words sound alike to them but have meanings that 
are miles apart. At least half the battle of learning 
what a word means, after all, is making sure what it 
doesn't mean. 

Imagine how teacher must have laughed when she 
ran across such genuine malaprops as these: 
"My sister is a mistress at Shorty's Cafe." 
"I will have my bookie report tomorrow." 
"My brother is suffering from indolent fever." 
"Yes, Thanksgiving is truly a time of happiness for 
every child, adult and adultress." 

How To Undress a Stranger 17 

"Mother wants my sister to take biology next year 
but she has a mind of her own. She's at that obstetric 

I've had skeptics corner me at parties and insist 
that the kids I interview on my "House Party" show 
just couldn't be that funny, day after day, without 
some backstage gagwriting by grownups. That's non- 
senseand I'll tell you why. Kids are fresh, original 
and offbeat in their thinking because it's the only 
way they can be. They're not like us lazy-minded 
adults, who can reach into our lifetime stockpile of 
common expressions for a ready-made way of saying 
what we wish. The child has no stockpile, so he's 
forced to think through his ideas for himself, and 
then make up an expression that seems to fit. 

Let's look at the contrast between the conven- 
tional grownup and a little boy as both react to one 
of life's lesser tragedies, the inevitable appearance of 
Mondays after those carefree and enjoyable Satur- 
days and Sundays. The grownup already has a pat 
expression at hand in the old stockpile to tell how 
he feels . . . "Blue Monday." But a little boy who 
just couldn't believe there could be so many Mondays 
had to think it through, and then checked the facts 
for himself before he made this solemn report to his 

"Looking at a calendar will prove there are not 
actually any more Mondays than Saturdays." 

18 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Sometimes a child is caught in the cross fire be- 
tween the high ideals of the classroom and the 
realities of everyday behavior. One boy who bravely 
reached for the heights of honesty came crashing 
down with this confession: 

"Because of George Washington, I once told the 
truth even though I thought I might get into trouble. 
I was right." 

Another young seeker of truth proclaimed, "It is 
more important to be honest than rich and famous 
and happy/' Then the idea began melting away on 

How To Undress a Stranger 19 

him like a popsicle, as he added, "Or at least any one 
of these by itself. In most cases." 

Imagine how a certain instructor felt when a pu- 
pil wrote this comment at the end of a semester: 

"This course in philosophy was a great help to me, 
personally. Although I used to be rather confused 
and lack confidence in my thinking, I am now con- 
fident to know that we are all rather confused." 

Confusion seems to be taking over completely as 
we wander onward now through this child's garden 
of nonsense and examine some of the choicer con- 
fessions of our bewildered young scholars: 

I am unsure about Daylight Savings Time. Maybe 
you can explain it to me. I can't. 

I plan to get a brod education. 

One of the unusualities about my family is that my 
cousin also happens to be the son of my father's 

20 Kids Sure Rite Funnyl 

Besides my mother and father, I have a fellow-sister 
and three bothers. 

Once my gang bilt a club house but there was onaly 
room for 1 at a time. 

My sister is sex and a half. 


Mother says use plenty of eggs in the milk to make 
a good omen. 

How; To Undress a Stranger 21 

Some good table manners are not to put your fingers 
in the butter and stop standing on that chair. 

The Holloween party I went to last year wasn't too 
much. I only screamed twise. 

22 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

It is often only a matter of fate as to whether a per- 
son is a genius or not. I, for example, (knowing 
what I do) would be one had I only been born 
1000 years ago. 

* * 

Last Halloween's movie was about a vampire that bit 
other peoples necks and just went out and bit 
somebody else when he was hungray again. I 
got so tickled. 


I have on occasion dranken coffee. I like it black, 
mixed half and half with cream. 


* * 

The ice cream and cookies really hit my spot after 
being in the sun all that while. 

We are not to run in class even when teacher don't 
see us because even if teacher don't see us Jesus 
can and he might tell the principal. 

How To Undress a Stranger 23 

Polite means to say thank you when you don't really 

want to. 

Ties are a great source of comfort when taken off. 

We soon discovered our new used car had defected 

* * 

Though I am now a child, I will one day be a man 
or a woman. 

24 Kids Sure Rite Funnyl 

I have had many good ideas for inventions in the 
past, but couldn't think how to use them. 

If I get to feeling funny about the length of my 
dresses, I just let the hims out. 

* * 

When we first moved in, our house was quite rambled 
by lack of upkeep. 

Santa's reindeer get around so fast because they have 
athletes feet. 

* * 

When I see a sad television, I try to keep my com- 
posure, but I often get completely decomposed. 

I particularly enjoy candid apples. 

How To Undress a Stranger 25 

You can strike a happy medium by doing it this way. 
First pay the fortune teller but then hit her right 


I plan to be married one day. Longer than one day 
really. It is just that this is how it is usually said. 

26 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

From two to two: 30 last year we of our class drew. 
Pictures. No guns. 


* * 

When I can go up on a hill and look down on our 
city it has a very sooting influence on me. 

* * 

According to some peoples beliefs, there is something 
that is half way between heaven and hell. It's 
called pubertory. 

* * 


Women like to sew in circles, where they knit, talk 
and do their needling. 



I have been told thrashing machines are not really 
used on children. 

* * 

I have been brought up never to break my bread or 
roll in my soup. 

T0 a 27 

By die we at my 1 

to eat to say I 
to see nay 

I this not to my un- 

less she me or me or 1 

like it. 


Turtles Have Gooey Beds 

V_>!LD MAN NOAH managed to crowd many a strange 
creature aboard his Ark, but few of his seagoing 
menagerie are half so fascinating as the curious ani- 
mals and insects that inhabit the fantasy world of 
our school kids. Let's go for a nature walk in these 
next few pages, and learn the answers to some of 
nature's most intriguing secrets . . . why grasshop- 
pers are so jumpy ... all about the quaint habits 
of that queer-type bird, the oscridge . . . and what 
turtles really think of their gooey beds. 

Much of the fun in talking to kids comes from 
the startling way they can put a backspin on their 
answers, saying something that's ridiculous and 
sensible at the same time. One young nature lover, 
asked how he would mount a butterfly, replied with 
devastating logic: 


Turtles Have Gooey Beds 29 

"About like a horse if you can get one big enough." 

Butterflies the size of the winged Pegasus must 
surely exist some place, the boy reasons, because you 
certainly couldn't mount one of those little ones that 
flit from flower to flower. 

Kids are so full of questions that they can't pos- 
sibly wait for someone to tell them all die answers. 
That's why they plunge recklessly ahead on their 
own, like so: 

"We used to deepend on silkworms excluesively 
until we noticed rayonworms and nylonworms." 

"When the frogs are in the water as tadpoles, they 
get in a bad habit of eating their own tails. Only on 
land is a frog safe from eating hisself up before it 
is too late." 

30 Kids Sure Rite Funnyl 

"When whales spout, they do because they enjoy 
smoking water." 

Sometimes an earnest young mind comes up with 
an entirely new theory, as this boy did: 

"The skin from many kinds of animals is used to 
make clothes. I think we should watch these animals 
closer. For if we see them scraching, we should know 
it will scrach us two." 

Here's another provocative bit of logical advice 
that a little girl had for snakes. She said, "When 
snakes eat too much or too fast, there skin pops off. 
They should take time to think about it." 

It may surprise you to see how serious a child can 
be when he is thinking about his own origin and 
place here on earth. He learns soon enough that 
human beings are masters of the earth, and that 
other animals are under man's dominion. He sees the 
animals in the zoo, in the barnyard, and the pets 
at home all dependent upon the will of man. After 
thinking about this, here is what one young man 
wrote to account for it: 

"While other animals were just playing around 
and having a good time, man was hard at work 
thinking how to evolve." 

Of all the questions that a child has on his mind, 
he is fascinated most by the ones that begin with 
"why." As any weary mother knows, the little ones 
under her feet are always saying why this and why 
that. With such a large supply of "whys" and a very 

Turtles Have Gooey Beds 31 

small supply of "becauses," it's no wonder that a 
child would come up with a merry-go-round kind of 
essay like this: 

"A grasshopper is nervous and jumpy because he 
cannot sleep. He cannot sleep because he has no eye- 
lids. He has no eyelids because he is too nervous 
and jumpy to sleep." 

And so on and on. 

There are times when even the truth sounds un- 
believable to a child's ear. Tell a little boy that fish 
live in schools, and he automatically pictures a class- 
room, complete with teacher. So you can hardly 
blame the boy who wrote this: 

"When fish get together they are in schools. Yes, 
they are. I can show where it says." 

32 Kids Sure Rite Funny I 

And another skeptic wrote, "Although a whale has 
now been discovered to be a mammal, there are still 
some fishy things about it/' 

Here are more novel nature notes: 

Perching birds enjoy sitting on that kind of fish. 

The home for a pet turtle should have two inches of 
dirt in it with three inches of water. Don't worry 
because he likes gooey beds. 

Turtles Have Gooey Beds 33 

Turtles eat worms, lettuce and turtle food that they 
buy in any pet shop. 


* * 

Box turtles are land turtles. They make good pests. 

Hamsters carry their meals in their pockets and their 
pockets in their cheeks. 


Watch out if you see a rouge elephant! 


* * 

One good way I figured out to tell between the buf- 
falo and bison is one of them is bigger than the 
other when I can think which it is. 

The lesser anteater is called the tamandua. We can 
only guess what is called the greater one. 


Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Mad dogs must be shot as we have no way of telling 
who they are mad at and might bite. 

Sardines are vanishing rapidly off the coast of Cali- 
fornia, so they are something we should stop 
talking about being packed as tight as. 

(Give the names of two bears that inhabit the Far 

They have polar bears and brown Kodak bears 
up there, but I don't know any of their names. 

Wild bores are the worst kind of pigs. 

Turtles Have Gooey Beds 35 

The zebra looks funny to us because it is stripped. 

We know something strange about birds. Altho they 
have no teeth they like to eat gravel. 

The flycatcher uses snake skins in its nest. Oh. After 
the snakes are through with them. 

An octopus gets its name from knowing how to have 
eight baby octopusses at once. 

36 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

I also read that pet rabitts are soft and gentle and 
quiet. The book did not menshun quiet what. 

Pet racoons will wash their food if you give them a 

The maltese cat is that because it likes malts. 

Turtles Have Gooey Beds 37 

Cream, fish and liver are all good cat foods. Their 
most tasty would probly be creamed fish liver. 

> < 


Some dogs are toy dogs but not really. 

A silk worm has not one but tee-double U-oh! holes 
in his head. But instead of siting and sulking he 
uses them to make silk. 

Nowaday horses are a vanishing race. 

* * 

Beavers are wonderful at dammi I should say making 
water holes with branches. 


* * 

The Scorpion was the pioneer of all the land ani- 
mals. I think history will decide he is just as im- 
portant as Columbus. 

38 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

All tigers have stripped skins. 

The Salamand is the wisest of all the river creatures. 
I have heard stories about the wisdom of a 
Salamand that are almost unbelievable. 


The clam has no other bones except on its outsides. 


* * 

Dogs age much quicker than people. In less than two 
months they are a year old. 

* * 

It is the male that says "Katy did!" He has to hang 
upside down and rub his wings together but it's 
worth it to him I guess. 


* * 

Back when animals first began having babies we had 
to have a name for them. So we called them 

Turtles Have Gooey Beds 39 

litters. Bugs too. Litters for riding were later 
type litters. 

* * 

Painted turtles got their names by living in the 
painted desert. 

Because of their extra good hearing, dogs often 
helped heard sheep. 

Owls pray mostly on rodents. 

Now that the dinosaurs are safely dead, we can call 
them clumsy and stupid. 

40 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

While most birds sit on eggs to hatch, the nuthatch 
has other ideas. 

Otters have more fun than most anybody else. 


* * 

Viscious dogs should be shut up. Or at leash on a 
least when walking. 

* * 

A sheep-dog is what you get from mixing sheeps 
and dogs. 


* * 

The greyhound's long legs and skinny body makes, of 
all dogs, him the most rabid. 

* * 

Some silly super-stitious people still think it is as 
much bad luck to walk under a ladder as to see 
a black cat. 

Turtles Have Gooey Beds 41 

While cod and whiting are certainly popular with 
many people, others would just as soon eat 

Here is a queer-type bird. A oscridge that does not 
fly but runs like a horse. Except he uses two legs 
which makes him a queer-type horse, too. 

The honeycomb is used to comb whatever the queen 
bee says to. 

42 Kids Sure Rite Funny/ 

Ducks are not caring where they lay their eggs so 
until they do don't let them go swiming. Or 
above you. 


I understand how the chicks get out of their shells, 
but how they get in who knows. 

I have never seen a cowbird so I don't know which 
is which half. 

Turtles Have Gooey Beds 43 

Pigs like to be clean. They try to do it by rolling in 
the mud, not being as smart as we. 

* * 

Barn swallows, naturally, have rather large mouths. 

* * 


A parakeet is a friendly bird. He will eat seeds or 
your hand. 

* * 

Many parrots (as well as humans) have the custom 
of matting for life. They are said to be insuffer- 


We found many mother baby hamsters were often 
grandmothers by the time they were four 
months old. But then we watched how they 
were fast livers. 

44 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Gorillas are always fighting. You hear talk all the 
time about gorilla warfare. 

(Is the kangaroo peculiar to Australia?) 
No, but it sure is to us. 


Brave New Electronic 

THINGS that were once thought to be 
science fiction now actually are." 

A child of our dawning space age wrote that in a 
classroom essay recently, and I was startled by the 
truth of it. This little boy had summed up in a 
sentence some of the most fantastic progress ever 
made by man . . . his spaceships, his satellites, 
and his rockets to probe the far reaches of the solar 

When I was a boy, my hero was Buck Rogers, the 
invincible spaceman of the comic pages. But now 
spaceships have soared out of the fantasy of the 
comics into the headlines of reality. Flesh and 
blood heroes like Colonel John Glenn have orbited 


Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

an astonished earth and one day will be landing on 
the moon. Even old Buck's ray gun is being per- 
fected in the laboratories, as scientists continue to 
master the energies of light. 

The world of kids has changed, too, since my gen- 
eration learned to read and write. The little red 
schoolhouse has all but disappeared, and with it the 
old pot-bellied stove that stood in the corner, and the 
rows of desks with initials and valentine hearts carved 
all over them. Schools built today have air condition- 
ing, scientific lighting, motion pictures and TV. 

Brave New Electronic World 


It all seems so different but the kids themselves 
haven't changed at all. They may talk about their 
model jet planes and atomic submarines at recess, 
but they're still struggling the same way their 
mothers and fathers did to see the grown-up world 
right side up. 

How are our kids doing at understanding the com- 
plex theories of modern science, atomic energy, 
nuclear fission, and the like? Let's ask them and see! 
Here's one boy's explanation of atomic fission: 

"See there are these electrons and protons that are 
on opposite sides of the atom. They meet and fight 
it out. When things get hottest and the atom can't 
stand it any more, it explodes/' 

48 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Another boy wrote this: 

"I think I admire the electron more than anything 
else about the atom because it weighs only about 
one over 2000th as much as a proton but can still 
hold its own." 

If you're a little behind on your modern physics, 
this student's explanation may help: 

"Electrons carry the negative charge while the 
protons provide the affirmative." 

That's right! (I'm positive.) And here's something 
I never knew before: 

"Inside every molecule are many, many Adams." 

Here's a new slant on an old saying: 

"With the coming of the atom, we know now what 
was meant when it was said 'the pen is mightier than 
the sword/ The period about to end this sentence for 
just one thing has zillions of unexploded atoms in it." 

How would you describe a vacuum? Here's one 
child's answer, brief and exact: 

"A vacuum is an empty place with nothing to it." 

The vast emptiness of space awed another boy 
into writing this: 

"There is no air in space. That means there is 
nothing. Try to think of it. It is easier to think of 
anything than nothing." 

The fun comes when a kid scores a near miss on 
the target of knowledge and comes up with a genuine 

Brave New Electronic World 49 

"Many broken windows result from masonic 

Often a grownup can only envy the simplicity and 
beauty of a child's way of expression, as in the case 
of the girl who wrote that "Climate is with us all the 
time while weather comes and goes/' 

Perfectly true, isn't it? 

A very young poet wrote this: 

"The wind is like the air, only pushier/' 

Sometimes the kids develop novel theories of their 
own. A boy who evidently rebelled against those 
Saturday night baths in chilly weather thought of 
this idea: 

"We should not take our bath in winter as often 
as in summer. If we will only let our clothes and us 
get a little darker, we take in the heat from the sun 

There are even times when a child does learn his 
lessons, but can't fit them together properly. One in- 
dignant lad wrote a note to his physics teacher, say- 

"You told me warm air rises, and then you said 
the higher you go, the colder it gets. Which may I 

Think that one over awhile! 

Let's go wandering now through the whole field 
of science and find out what our kids have learned 
or think they've learned: 


Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

While molecules in gases and liquids bounce around 
from place to place, in solids they just lay there 
and vibrate. 

* * 

Cotton is used to make clothes and gin. 


Hi fi has made radio singers a lot more faithful. 

Brave New Electronic World 51 

How to tell when spring is here is you can look for 
bears. Too, birds flying backside from the south. 

* * 

(Why are days shorter in winter than in summer?} 
During the cold winter months, the days get 
cold and contract. In the summer time they get 
hot and expand. 


* * 

Rain clouds float around up there and then they bump 
into each other and out falls the rain. 


* * 


A hurricane has an eye in it. This is like a cycclops. 


Someday a man will go to the moon. This is a loony 

* * 


You never know how rockets will behave because 
they go through stages. 


Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Tides are interesting if you happen to be interested 
in them. 

The earth holds on to everything with its grabity 

* * 

Newton noticed that anything at rest tended to re- 
main at rest. For this he grew famous. 

Brave New Electronic World 


(What does the inertial law of Galileo prove?) 
That there are some things I don't know. 

You can listen to thunder after lightning and tell how 
close you came to geting hit. If you don't hear it 
then you got hit, so never mind. 

In taking the word indivisible, we have an interest- 
ing one. Altho America (since the Civil War) is 
indivisible, the atoms in America (since 1945) 

54 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

have been divisible. Atoms in Russia and Eng- 
land and other countries are also becoming no 
longer indivisible. Remember this is not to say 
they are invisible (altho they are). This is to say 
something else. 


:* *: 

Evaporated is things we can't see like evaporated 

* * 

Light travels faster in hot weather than it does in 
cold. In the summer it gets here before 6:00. 

* * 


Heated air moves faster but so would we all. 


You can cook things with charcoal by putting it in 
brassieres. Women wear other kinds to keep 
warm also. 

* * 

(Why does a compass always point North?) 
They are stubborn that way. 

Brave New Electronic World 


We have to send light through a prison before it will 
show all its colors. 

(What do stratus clouds look like?) 

Molecules are constantly bumping around each other 
in the air. There is really quite an overpopula- 
tion of molecules. 

56 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Protons are found mainly in meat and electricity. 

(Why is the flame extinguished when a bottle is 
placed over the candle?) 
Because of Magic. 

One of the most important things to remember about 
clouds is oh I forget what I started to say. 

Gravity is caused because objects and bodies and 
things attract each other to them. Opposites 
especially, and in electricity and people. 

Brave New Electronic World 

If you are in a boat and want to stop, the best way is 
to dig your pole in the bottom of the river. 
Friction can always stop you this way even if 
the boat goes on. 

Water vapor gets together in a cloud. When it is big 
enough to be called a drop it does. 

Each light bulb contains many whats. We don't know 
for sure yet. 

Two great forces are constantly oppossing each other. 
They are known as gravity and the centrifical 

58 Kids Sure Rite Funnyl 

force. There will always be wars and rumors of 
wars as long as these two forces are allowed to 

The four seasons are the best ones I know of. 

* * 

High up in the sky the air is very thin. It is only close 
to the ground that we find the fat kind. 

We can expect rain most when the pressure is feel- 
ing low. It is in the sunshine that we are most 
apt to be high. 

Most metals are definately more or less elastic. 

Ball bearings and plenty of oil are needed for a 
machine to osculate properly. 

Brave New Electronic World 


Since they have learned that whirlpools are not 
caused by demons, sailors caught in them can 
now know it is not demons that killed them. 

* * 

(What's the difference between a bolt and a nut?} 
A bolt is a thing like a stick of hard metal such 
as iron with a square bunch on one end and a lot 
of scratching wound around the other end. A 
nut is similar to the bolt only just the opposite, 
being a hole in a little chunk of iron, sawed off 
short, with wrinkles around the inside of the 

60 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

The highest of all clouds are the circus clouds. 

We think the earth feels still but it is in a constant 
commotion going around itself. 

* * 

Hail comes in all sizes but not for long. 

Brave New Electronic World 61 

Slush is snow with all the fun melted out. 

Rain is saved up in cloud banks. 


* * 


Fish can drown in air. That is true. So we are even. 


Cleopatria Loves Mark 
( Twain) 

JLJLOW THE great men of history would laugh, if only 
they could return to earth and see themselves the 
way our modern school kids think of them. I can 
just picture America's great humorist, Mark Twain, 
holding his sides and doubling up at the thought of 
being remembered by one junior historian as the 
"Mark" who was the lover of Cleopatra. Twain knew 
a lot more about Mississippi rafts than he ever did 
about barges on the Nile . . . but come to think of 
it, 111 bet that the author of Huckleberry Finn 
would have enjoyed a Nile cruise with Queen Cleo. 
History is like one big fairy-tale storybook to our 
younger school kids. Not until high school can we 
expect them to have any real understanding of the 


Cleopatria Loves Mark (Twain) 63 

vast sweep of history through the centuries. Instead, 
the little ones visualize history as a series of fanciful 
tales about famous heroes, leaders and adventurers. 
They have little notion of how very long ago it was 
that Caesar's legions campaigned through Gaul or 
Hannibal came marching over the Alps. Being so 
very new on earth themselves, kids figure that any- 
body who lived before their grandparents were born 
must have been very old indeed. Young minds have 
a way of losing count as they try to roll the years 
backward to the days of Alexander the Great, who 
impressed one admiring student as being "one of 
my favorite tirants." 

Perhaps the Italian explorer who discovered Amer- 
ica might be somewhat upset to read one young 
skeptic's verdict on him: 

"I don't believe Columbus is as famous as most 
people think he is." 

But I'm sure that President Lincoln would laugh to 
hear that he was nicknamed "Honest Ape" because 
he was a good man, but homely. 

There are times when a child hits closer to the 
truth than he realizes, as when a boy observed: 

"Despite her fighting leadership, most historians 
agree that Joan of Arc was really a tinder woman." 

Anybody who has struggled with geometry can 
enjoy the unintentional humor in this one: 

"Phethagerous wrote down many things about 
geometry that man should know for his own good. 

64 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

We were very fortunate to have him living for such 
a short time/' 

Let's run through the alphabet of some of our best 
known historical figures; I guarantee you'll find 
things out that you never "knew" before: 


* * 

ADAM and EVE wore nothing but figments. 

JOHN ADAMS was actually not his son, so he put a 
Quincy in between his son so we would know. 

ANESTHESIA was the last of the Russian prin- 

Cleopatria Loves Mark (Twain) 65 


A man famous for scattering his seed all over 
the country. 

BENEDICT ARNOLD was a trader. He traded 

ALEXANDER GRAHAM BELL invented the tele- 
phone. We named the telephone bell after him. 


* * 

WILLIAM BENDIX invented the automatic washer. 

* * 

IRVING BERLIN composes both the words and 
lyrics of his songs. 


* * 

JOHN BROWN was caught by the south and exe- 
cuted in 1859. No I take that back, he was hung. 

66 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

for president in three different Democratic Con- 

* * 

(What did JULIUS CAESAR write?} 

* * 

(Name a famous woman scientist.} 

ROBINSON CARUSO was a great singer, unfortu- 
nately shipwrecked. 

Cleopatria Loves Mark (Twain) 67 

CLEOPATRIA was a wicked ruler. She was just like 
Julius Caesar except the wrong sex only moreso. 

By getting to be president, CLEVELAND reached 
the pinochle of success. A first name for him 
was Grover. 

LEON CZOLGOSZ shot the gun that fatally killed 
President McKinley. 

RICHARD DANA sailed around the horn to Cali- 
fornia and tanned a lot of hides. 

68 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 


He was a great talker who practiced with a 
mouth of pebbles. It really works and you can 
try it with bubblegum. 



(Describe DEMOSTHENES.) 

I have never seen any of these. 

THOMAS EDISON invented the lightbulb because 
he needed it. He didn't sleep much. 

* * 


My favorite American was BEN FRANKLIN be- 
cause here is why. He worked hard & thought a 
lot & soforth. 


:* *: 

It is not true, the story of BEN FRANKLIN flying 
his kite in a thunderstorm. Only a nut would 
try it. 

Cleopatria Loves Mark (Twain) 69 

GALILEO proved beyond a doubt that heavy things 
and light ones fall at the same speed. Of course 
the world has changed since then. 


* * 

If GENERAL GRANT'S formula for success could 
be summed up in one sentence, it would be this: 
Always start everything you finish. 


* * 


GULLIBLE was the traveler. 


* * 


HAMLET was a small pig made famous by Shake- 


* * 

HANNIBAL had a lot of elephants. He charged them 
at the enemy, 


* * 

HANNIBAL had a great stroke of luck in his march 
toward Rome. For if the Alps had not happened 
to be there, he would never have been able to 
cross them. 


Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

What made O. HENRY so unusual was he wasn't 
really who his name said he was. 

Today we know HOMER was not one but several 
people. Some say some Homers might even be 
from other countries but they all seem Greek 
to me. 

Cleopatria Loves Mark (Twain) 71 

Both sides of ALDOUS HUXLEY were well edu- 

When THOMAS JEFFERSON was getting ready to 
retire, they held a banquet to give him a little 

* * 

EDWARD JENNER taught us that if there is a lot 
of sickness going around, we should go get a 
shot of something. 

72 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

JOSEPH didn't wear bathrobes like other men in the 
Bible. He liked sports coats and had one of 
many colors. 


I know of only one person smarter than president 
KENNEDY. Can you think who? Sure! Or at 
least that is who I would say. 

LAVOISIER was the inventor of mouth wash. 

* * 

PETER LAWFORD is a good friend of President 
Kennedy who is also the lady he is married to's 

* * 

HENRY LONGFELLOW is one of our most famous 

* * 

MACADAM was the first Scotchman. 

Cleopatria Loves Mark (Twain) 73 

MAGELLAN sailed all the way around the world 
where he discovered geography. 

MARCONI invented the noodle and stuff like that 

CYRUS McCORMICK invented the grim reaper 

* * 


ISSAC NEWTON passed the law of gravity. 

74 Kids Sure Rite Funnyl 

PLASTER OF PARIS makes dress fashions. 

* * 

WILEY POST had only his left eye due to an acci- 
dent. Or maybe it was his right no it must have 
oh why does it matter so much? 


* * 

SIR WALTER RALEIGH was a rich sailor with a 
golden hind. 

* * 

Whether WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE really wrote 
all his plays is not certain. It is thought by some 
that they might have been written by a William 
Shakespeare, the Different, another man by the 
same name. 

* * 

The abominable SNOWMAN is called that because 
he won't let people shoot him. 

Cleopatria Loves Mark (Twain) 75 

STALIN has now been discredited by removing his 

* * 

ST. CHRISTOPHER always looks after travelers un- 
less they go too fast. 

In just a few short years MARK TWAIN became a 
sensation overnight. 

GEORGE WASHINGTON is one of my favorites 
like when he didn't let the British know he was 

76 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

out of bulits but kept firing. I read many things 
on him in a book. It was a brown one for 14 days. 
I am glad he comes but once a year. 

WHISTLER'S was the dearest mother he had. 


General Custard and 
Daniel Boom 

SPECIALISTS are supposed to be experts who know 
more and more about less and less. Kids are just the 
opposite, because they know almost nothing about 
everything. Only a kid could sum up the entire his- 
tory of the United States in one magnificently inade- 
quate phrase: "In American history, there was first 
Columbus, then on to now." Only a child could make 
such a merry slip as this: "The American Revolution 
was caused by taxation without relaxation." On the 
other hand, maybe that last boy was right! We might 
all be British subjects today if King George had only 
relaxed a little on that tea tax. 

Here's one pint-sized patriot's version of how we 
drummed King George's Redcoats out of our colonies: 


78 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

"The british thought they were so smart they at- 
tacked us all over. But we showed them. Ha Ha. 
There was no use there trying to outfight us because 
we were right. After we showed them, they got out 
so we could have the forth of July/' 

The Father of our Country seemed all too virtuous 
to one little doubter who wrote: 

"George Washington never told a lie and I don't 
believe it/* 

Here are some little-known facts from the days of 
the Civil War: 

"One reason the South lost the war was they made 
Confederate money, not knowing it was worthless." 

"Lincoln was setting in a theater booth when he 
was killed. It was John Wilke's booth/* 

General Custard and Daniel Boom 79 

"Lincoln soon proved to be mortally wounded by 
the shot, as was the nation, to a lesser degree/' 

"Honest Abe got that nickname because he had 
been taught so that he would not do anything, and 
even if he did not to sneak around the bush about it 
if asked/' 

If you're a Western history fan, you may be sur- 
prised to read these rather original ideas on the 
pioneer days: 

"Rawhide saddles were called that because that is 
how they made you/' 

"Covered wagons were often used in rum-running. 
This is why they kept them covered." 

Now let's follow a trail of very small footsteps into 
America's past, and see what our school kids have to 
say about the growth of the USA: 

80 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

All of our ancestors were not born in America but 
came from other places. As a mattery fact, some 
of us might be surprised to learn where we 
came from. 


* * 

Columbus called the people Indians because every- 
body thought they were in India. We still do 
even to this day. 

* * 

We don't know who lost New York in the first place 
but Peter Sylverson founded it again somewhere 
among the 16 hundreds. 

* * 

(Where did our pioneers come from?) 

I am not sure but I know it is not the stork. 

* * 

While stagecoaches carried both kind of passengers, 
the pony express would only carry the male. 

General Custard and Daniel Boom 81 

Once upon a time Gorge Washington had a birthday. 
And his father gave him a shinny new ax. And 
Gorge took it outside and started chopping a 
stowt cherry tree. Yes! And his father came 
home and looked at what he had done. Yes! So 
he asked Gorge and Gorge said he had, and that 
is all. 


* * 


After the war, Washington perferred to retire to his 
rusty home in Mt. Vernon. 


* * 


The pioneers prided themselves on their clean homes. 
Even if they only had dirt floors it was never a 
dirty kind. 

* * 

The men of colonial days were gentlemen, and there 
ladies were grand dames. 


* * 

Those men at the California missions who wore long 
robes were called "monks," so the ladies who 
worked with them must have been "monkeys." 


Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

King George decided he didn't want us to have our 
freedom. I don't know why not but it wasn't a 
very good reason. 

* * 

What the settlers settled were fusses before civilaza- 
tion came to us. 

In the older days the cowboies main job was to take 
care of the cows. Also the bad Engines. 

General Custard and Daniel Boom 83 

The invention of the handcar made it possible for 
man to travel by hand as well as by foot. 

(What is a boom town?) 

A town settled by Daniel Boom. 

"The Spirit of 76" is talking about 76 ghosts thought 
up to scare the Bridish. 

84 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Pioneers razed mostly crops and houses. 

When they had sheep, the pinears made their cloths 
from sheep wool. When they had no sheep, they 
got their wool from bufalos and other wild ani- 
mals. This was harder. 


* * 

Blunderbuses represented the first crude attempt to 
travel mechanically. 

* * 

The West used to be full of cowboys but they all shot 
each other. 


* * 

Frontier women made their own colors for killing or 
rather dieing their clothes. 


* * 

Every U.S. Cavalryman was trained to be brave. If 
he was scalped, he was never to show it. 

General Custard and Daniel Boom 85 

In the old days they had good Indians and bad in- 
dians. The bad indians were the ones who shot 


* * 

The apaches raised the roof with the settlers. 


* * 

The Pony Express was a system worked out to send 
ponies through the mail. 

86 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

The Civil War was a threat to the unity of the Untied 

(Would you rather be Davy Crockett or General 
Grant? Why?) 
I don't care. Either way I am dead. 

* * 

The Indians liked to scallop their victims. 


* * 

General Custer was killed in the Battle of Little Big 
Horn. This proved to be his undoing. 

Little Big Horn sounds as confusing to me as to 
General Custard. 


*** *** 

The Civil War is because we acted Kind and Civil to 
each other since we were all Americans. Like 
no shooting in the back if you have Kings X. 
And no fair throwing mud. 

General Custard and Daniel Boom 


It was October '29 when it finally happened. With 
the crash of the markets, valuable stocks be- 
came invaluable overnight. 

Unfortunately, the depression happened just as 
everybody was out of work. 

When a cowboy got a group of horses together, he 
would put them in a chorale. 

John Kennedy is my favorite 34th president of the 
United States. 

88 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

(Who said, "If this be treason, make the most of it"?) 
Benedict Arnold. 

* * 

(What did France give the United States for New 
York harbor?) 
I don't know. I thought it was still ours. 

* * 


To get the gold out of the water, the California 
miners used a river bedpan. 

* * 

The Puritans came to this country so they could enjoy 
freedom of persecution. 

* * 


(Who is the First Lady?) 


* * 

The early colonists punished people by taking them 
to the market and putting them into stocks. 

General Custard and Daniel Boom 89 

In the winter, if the pioneers found any sugar-maple 
trees, they would send somebody out in the cold 
to get his. Then they would get the sap and boil 
him in syrup and sugar. I know this sounds 
cruel, but times were hard then. 

Franklin Roosevelt was the longest president we 
ever had. 

(What happened at the Battle of the Alamo?) 
We lost. 

90 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

When the Indians got together, they held their bow 



* * 

The President says we should not send any gold 
drains overseas. 


Martians, Meteors and 

Twinkle, twinkle, little star, 
How I wonder what you are, 
Up above the world so high, 
Like a diamond in the sky. 


MAGINE YOURSELF a child again on some balmy 
summer evening, gazing upward at those mysteri- 
ous, twinkling diamonds in the sky. You feel as if 
you could almost reach on tiptoe to touch them, and 
yet your teacher has told you that they are millions 
of miles away. The stories you hear at school about 
the universe seem more fantastic than any of the 
bedtime tales that mother used to read to you. 


92 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Teacher says that the world is really a round ball 
. . . that it spins entirely around each day . . . that 
it's rushing through space in a vast orbit around the 
sun . . . and that there are millions of other "suns" in 
the far, galactic depths beyond. These are ideas that 
you must take on faith, because your mind cannot 
grasp the immensities of the universe. So you come 
away from your starry communion, feeling the same 
kind of awe that humans have always felt since the 
time they first raised their eyes to the heavens. 

Looking at the universe as the kids sometimes see 
it is like looking through the wrong end of a tele- 
scope . . . but it's fun to try! Only a kid could dream 
up a theory such as this one about the possibility of 
life on the moon: 

"While going around the earth, the moon also turns 
around itself once. Since it has learned how to turn 
around itself, this makes me know there is higher in- 
telligents on the moon." 

They say there aren't many people who really un- 
derstand Einstein's theory of relativity . . . but here's 
a new version of it that seems to make a sense all its 

"When things heaten they expand. Our expanding 
universe, just as a case, is caused by our increasing 
hot summers." 

One of the dizziest, mind-spinning attempts to 
link up one fact with another that I've ever read was 

Martians, Meteors and Moonshine 93 

a boy's thought about weightlessness in outer space: 

"Col. Glen flew so fast he didn't weigh anything. 
But when he slowed down he weighed like his old 
self again. This explains maybe why fat people are 
so heavy, is because they go slower than other 

Many centuries ago, a primitive tribe in India be- 
lieved that the earth was a huge tea tray, supported 
on the backs of three giant elephants which in turn 
were standing on the shell of an enormous tortoise. 
Just as fanciful were the ancient Egyptians, who 
thought the sky was a heavenly Nile where the great 
sun god, Ra, went sailing every day from dawn until 
dusk. Today there are no longer believers in celestial 
tea trays, although flying saucers are still popular. 
There are even some diehards around who believe 
the world is flat ... so perhaps we shouldn't be sur- 
prised when kids are skeptical about science: 

"The earth is moving through space at a terrific 
speed, circling the sun while the moon circles us. At 
least this is the latest theory." 

"The Nebulus Theory of how the earth got started 
is still pretty hazy." 

"If we could only believe what we read, the sun 
would be a million miles more times farther than the 

The vast distances of interplanetary space dazzled 
one student into writing this: 

94 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

"Marz is so far off it takes a million years to walk 
there on an express train." 

Another boy thought it was just as well that Mars 
was so far away, pointing out that: 

"It is just as far for the Marsians to get to us as 
we to get to them, so we have that constillation." 

Here are more ideas on the moon, meteors, and 

: < 


I have read where some say the moon is too hot too 
live on. Others say it is too cold. So I bet it's 
just right. 

* * 

When meteors strike our air it burns them up. Luckly 
air effects we of the humans unlike that. 

* * 

To anyone on the moon, they would look and think 
the earth is only just a mirror for the sun, so 
that shows how much they know. 

Martians, Meteors and Moonshine 


One reason for getting to Mars is that people live 
longer there. Say like a man is 100 years here 
on Earth, well he is much less older on Mars. It 
sounds crazy but it is so. 

* * 

There is one side of the moon we have never looked 
at. I am not for sure exactly which side it is. 

For as long as the moon has been there, it has made 
a trip around the earth every month. There is 
not much else to do. 

96 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

We have never been able to see but one side of the 
moon. No one has ever seen the inside yet. 

Life in outer space is much different from what we 
usually hear. Listen. ?????. What did I say? 
Search me. You see this shows we are unable to 
hear anything like a sound in outer space. 


The planets traveling around the sun are all part of 
our Sonar System. 

Martians, Meteors and Moonshine 97 

When we see the sitting sun at night it does not 
really move. We are the ones that move and sit. 

* * 


I understand about day and night but it takes me 
longer to think out winter and summer. It takes 
the sun about 365 days. 

* * 

Night is when we get on the shady side of the sun. 


Clouds are what make the moon move when you 
watch it. 

The "moon" is really a satellite. But I and a lot of 

other people still catch ourselves calling it 



* * 

Jupiter has twelve moons circling around it. It has a 
lot of pull, you see. 

Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Some people can tell what time it is by looking at 
the sun, but I have never been able to make out 
the numbers. 

The moon follows our earth in a circle or bit. 

(Where is Mercury?) 

It hides in thermometers. 

Martians, Meteors and Moonshine 99 

It happens to take the earth one year exactly to go 
around the sun. 

A trip to the moon would take longer than I would 
care to take the time to figure out. 

(In what ways are we dependent upon the sun?) 
We can always depend on the sun for sunburns 
and tidal waves. 

(Why is the sky blue?) 

Because when sunlight hits the air it bends a 
little, this being the right answer to one of the 
questions, this one I think. 

100 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Space scientists call outer space that. This is as good 
a name as I can think for it. 


Now that we know that planets are made of rocks 
and stars are made of gases, all we have to do is 
get close enough to tell which. 

In the light of the moon on a clear night is the best 
time to get all the moonshine possible. 

Martians, Meteors and Moonshine 101 

In order to know that the moon has gravity I need 
only look at the tides. Somehow this proves it 
to me concluesively. 

: * 

Some claim how days and nights on the moon are 
two weeks old. This makes for good talk and 
who can prove different? 

* * 

The moon means more to us than the sun because 
it shines at night when we need it most. 



Our nights our not as cold on earth as on other 
planets. If so our plants and animals could not 
live. Us either. 

* < 


When we mention the sun we are really talking about 
a star. And when we say stars we should really 
say suns. We will know why after we explore 


Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Everybody leans to the sun in summer and away in 
winter. We are all a little tipsy that way. 

To think that snowflakes fall from the stars is crazy. 
We all learn that snowflakes have six points. 

While the sun continues to reklessly fly through 
space, we blindly follow along and around it, 
But some day we will learn how to go on our 
own and rfien watch out. 

Martians, Meteors and Moonshine 103 

Through the years people have guessed that Venus 
might be inhabited by women, dragons, or other 
strange creatures. 

Water really has oxygen just like we breathe, but 
don't try it. 

Saturn looks better with a few belts. 

The air keeps the sun from burning us, but smart 
people rub some stuff on themselves in summer 
just the same. 

104 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

The air is miles thick, but most thick on the ground. 
Humans are better at having thick air. 


* * 

There is a new moon every month, but we only say 
that. Really it is the same old moon every time. 


(Describe the water cycle.} 

The water cycle is a thing on which one or more 
persons can ride on the water by petaling along. 
I don't believe it has been invented yet. 



The Pharaohs and Their 

V/NE OF THE best cartoon shows for kids on tele- 
vision has been "The Flintstones," an imaginative 
series about a cave man and his family who have all 
the modern comfortsa stone TV set, a telephone 
made from a conch shell, and even a pedal-powered 
automobile. What fascinates me about the show is 
that grownups laugh at the idea of a cave man en- 
joying a twentieth century life . . . but our little kids 
seem to take it for granted. After all, why shouldn't 
cave kids be watching TV as they do themselves? 
Why shouldn't their mothers gossip on the phone, 
and fix dinner in kitchens with stoves and refriger- 
ators? A cave like that makes far more sense than 
the ones that our archeologists tell us were inhabited 


106 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

in prehistoric times by beetle-browed, club-swinging 
characters who wore animal skins. 

History for kids is a merry mix-up of the ancient 
and the modern, a timeless stage where kings and 
conquerors, heroes and warriors come and go with 
little regard for the centuries. Little boys and girls 
who can barely tell time by the clock can hardly be 
expected to remember whether it was Hannibal or 
Napoleon who had those elephants or which man 
came first. 

Just for fun, let's read some history as our children 
see it, starting with some comments on man's earliest 
days on earth: 

"In cave man times they all had odd names like 
Alley Oop and Homo Sapiens." 

"I am suspicious that there were smart-as-human 
creatures before humans ourselves. For one thing, I 
know there were no humans alive during the Meso- 
zoic period, but someone was still there to name it." 

The Pharaohs and Their Mommies 107 

"We know human beings lived as long as one-mil- 
lion years ago since we have found trash and ashes 
in the one-million year ago earth layer. We know 
only humans could have made this mess/' 

"Man has been on the earth for only a drop in the 

By the time we move on to ancient Egypt, the con- 
fusion is deepening: 

"The people in Egyptian times invented 365 days 
in a year, but true democrasies refined it by sticking 
in an extra day every four years for elections/' 

"The pyramids are so far out from any place, get- 
ting to them is said to be one of the seven great 
wanders of the world." 

I'd love to have seen the teacher's reaction in this 
question- and-answer exchange: 

Did the Sumerians, Egyptians or Hittites live 
closest to the Nile River? 

It's certainly true, as one pupil wrote, that "foreign 
history is getting longer and harder all the time/' 
But if our kids don't know all the answers, they can 
always do what their parents once did ... try to slide 
by on a guess or two: 

"Gaul was called that because it's people had so 
much of it." 

"The Roman Legends were Legends soldiers went 
around telling about how great Rome was." 


Kids Sure Rite Funnyl 

"The Romans are called that by History because 
they never stayed in one place/' 

Here are some of my favorite questions and an- 

When were the Middle Ages? 
Somewhere around 40rty. 

The Pharaohs and Their Mommies 109 

When was the Age of Discovery? 

For me about 9. 
Name the major European sport of the 18th century. 


Let's continue with history you didn't know till 

The moon calendar of the early people proved to be 
wrong because what if it was a cloudy night? 

* * 

People first shook hands to prove they had no arms. 
That is, of course, they could keep their flesh 
and boney kind. 

110 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

An achronism is an impossible thing of the past. As 
for the future, no one can say for sure. 

For centuries, man wondered what a missing link 
might look like. Finally someone figured out that 
it wasn't worth the trouble in knowing anyway. 

* * 

A floating population is like when they found baby 
Moses in the bulls rushes. 

* * 

Though I hear about them all the time, I have never 
knowingly seen a holy roaming empire. 



July is called after Julius Caesar. One day he decided, 
"you know I would like another month of sum- 
mer/' and that is how it happened. 

Althouh the Greeks and Romans lived pretty close 
together on the map and learned a lot from each 

The Pharaohs and Their Mommies 


other and did many things alike and looked a lot 
alike, there the resemblance ends. 

All the Pharaohs wanted to be mommies. It usually 
killed them. 

As soon as the Homes captured the Europeons they 
started presecuting them. So every body hated 
them. Pretty soon the Homes changed their 
mind and had good people and built good roads 
and other things and so every body still hated 

112 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Sometimes we think of the Persians as living when 
the world was younger. At other times it is the 
old or ancient times. It depends mosty on where 
you count from. 

* * 

In ancient times, crimes were called aniquities and 
good deeds were antiquities. 

:* * 


Things got so bad in the dark ages that monks were 
smarter than humans. 

* * 

(When was the Magna Carta signed?) 
At 12:15. 

The good that knights did was they brought loin 
order to the land. They would not stand for 
meanness but stood for curage. 

The Pharaohs and Their Mommies 


One cause of progress slowing up is when barbarian 
chiefs pass the power to their children and then 
on down to their children without letting the 
grownups run it. 

* * 

As we learned about printing books and how to have 
liesure and everything, knowledge and man 
spread wider and wider. 

* * 

The French Revolution was fermented by the middle 

As Napoleon was backing through Russia he must 
have realized all his dreams had been for nougat. 

114 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

The Bore War was a very dull one. 

* * 

I am not speaking to Khruschef . 

* * 

Knights always carried a coat of arms with them. I 
forget what they used them for, but they remem- 
bered and that was what was important. 

The Pharaohs and Their Mommies 115 

(Where was the treaty ending the First World War 
On page 117. 

* * 

Humanity can gain a great lesson from the world 
war number two, although historians are the 
only ones who know for sure what it is. 


> < 

The Knights of old fought for ladys hankerchief s and 
stockings and other favors they got. 

* * 

(What great event occurred in 1066?) 

That was so long ago that I don't remember. 

Eskimos enjoy blubbering at every meal. 

* * 

The Irish have very heavy brogans. 

116 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

One of the wisest of all Romans came from Cin- 

The Greeks made wonderful statues. They were the 
best chiselers of the ancient world. 

The Egyptians lived before money so they used sedi- 
ment which they deposited in the banks of the 

The Pharaohs and Their Mommies 117 

The Franks invented the wiener. 


* * 


The Saturnalia was the time when all the Romans 
took their baths. 


* * 

In the old days, all countries were run by kings, 

queens and jacks. 

* * 

(Name a great leader of the Crusades.} 


* * 

In the Middle Ages, knights had fun knocking each 
other off horses. This was called jesting. 



Money Can Make You 



ACK IN MY OWN boyhood days, a kid had to be a 
shrewd trader to survive in a world of junior finan- 
ciers who knew exactly how much the current base- 
ball picture cards were worth on the bubble gum 
market. These were the same sharpies who would 
trade you out of your best aggies, or lure you into a 
game for keeps where you'd lose all your marbles to 
the big boys. Sometimes a windfall might come along 
to refinance your operations, such as an unexpected 
find of pop bottles that could be redeemed for cash 
at the corner grocery. But usually we kids learned 
our first lessons in economics the hard way, dis- 
covering soon enough that careless traders go home 
with empty pockets. 


Money Can Make You Rich 119 

The economics of the grown-up world aren't really 
so very different. Our stock exchanges are basically 
places where men can trade stocks for whatever they 
think they're worth, just as they once traded pictures 
of Babe Ruth and Ty Cobb. And if a man insists on 
flinging his marbles away on a good time, there's al- 
ways Las Vegas or Reno. 

The fun comes when kids try to understand how 
the adult system of economics operates. One boy 
gave this encouraging tip on how to grow prosper- 

"Stocks and bonds and all those things are not al- 
ways necessary. Many people have struck it rich with 
little more than money/' 

A future conservative wrote this: 

"Our country's national prosperity is exceeded only 
by our national debt/* 

If you've never quite understood why the stock 
market crashed in the 20's, this kid's theory comes 
very close to the truth: 

"1929 happened because people keeped putting 
their savings in stocks instead of money." 

Kids know about taxes, too: 

"A surtax is the tax put on high gentlemen." 

"Income tacks are the most expensive kind." 

A future Bernard Baruch evidently wrote this: 

"Bartering means trading for something you don't 
have for something the other person doesn't have. 

120 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

But of course if you really don't have it and he 
doesn't either, you can see why people had to invent 
money before things got to compleacated." 

Here's something for the people in Washington to 
think about: 

"Post offices often mark over our stamps so we 
can't possibly use them again. This is a good ex- 
ample of the government waste we hear about." 

There are times when a kid says more than he 
realizes, as these did: 

"Much of the work of the government has been 
trained to be done by civil serpents." 
"We now live in the Age of Steal." 

Money Can Make You Rich 121 

Social studies classes are the soil where such 
boners sprout up, so let's wander at random through 
the whole field and pick some more favorites : 

* * 


Life insurance makes it possible so that if a man dies 
he will have something after he dies for we know 
he cannot take anything along made while liv- 

> * 

One result of inflation is that ten pennies are now 
worth only one dime. 

It is the duty of the legislature to confine the presi- 
dents appointees. 


* * 

Two ways to prevent floods are to plant trees and 
damn the streams. It is hard work. 


Kids Sure Rite Funny I 

Only in wars and epidemics does our country ask 
us to bear our arms. 

"For the benefit of mankind" means to think of your 
children. Or if you don't have any, then your 
children's children and theirs and on as far as 
you can think. 

(When is our next presidential election to be held?) 
By and by. 

Money Can Make Yow Rich 123 

The president keeps all his secretaries in a cabinet. 

Our Four Freedoms are: Freedom from Want, Free- 
dom from Fear, Freedom from the Press and 
Freedom from Religion. 

* * 

I am positive there will never be another world war, 
will there? 


* * 

Post office workers are called clerks and carriers but 
not like diseases or anything like that. 


* * 

If you want to vote on something, you can always get 
up a partition. 

* * 

Too many Americans think only about television sets 
and automobiles and other such frivlious neces- 


Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Dictators are mean and people who want to be them 
are too. If anybody ever asked me if I wanted 
to be a dictator, I could truthfully say no, yes no! 
in answering. 

In order to be certain of having a house for a long 
period of time, the house should be leashed. 

It takes an act of Congress to make an officer a 

Money Can Make You Rich 


Many consider our nation's no. 1 problem to be 
jubilant delinquency. 

Compared to a General, a Kernel's pay is just chicken- 

Many law inforcing officers say that walkers should 
be given tickets just like drivers when they dis- 
obey the law. It is for their own safeness. I 
hardily agree. 

126 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

To have faith in your convictions means no matter 
how many times you go to jail you know it's for 
your own good. 

Capital punishment should not be used in the train- 
ing of little children. 

One good thing about the king system over the presi- 
dents is many of them have the same first name 
so all you have to remember is what comes after 
VII, VIII, X and the like. 

Money Can Make Yow Rich 127 

No property can change hands without first every- 
one sinning on the dotted line. 

* * 

A Representative is somebody who is very average. 


* * 

Politicians kiss babies to get votes. This is gooey 

* * 


UNESCO is a kind of cookie. 


The good kind of ministers are in church, and the 
other kind are in government. 

* * 

The Red Cross ladies are always ready to offer them- 
selves for charity. 


After criminals go to jail, the best ones are let out 

128 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

In the old days, men walked on the outside of women 
so they wouldn't get dirty. 

Now that women can vote, they have bigger seats in 


* * 

When a man and woman are married a long time, 
they form a strong detachment. 

Every ten years we count our census. Five the last 


* * 

Everybody ought to give juvenile delinquency a 
helping hand. 



From Ha way a to 

JL ODAY'S KIDS have a magic carpet called television 
that whisks them away on exciting adventures to 
exotic places all over the world. Long before they're 
old enough to go to school, they're already pushing 
through the jungles on safaris, striding the decks of 
South Seas schooners, or exploring the ocean depths 
with the aquanauts. Movies, travelogues and adven- 
ture shows are their first lessons in what the rest of 
the globe and its peoples are like. 

Besides enjoying these imaginary journeys via TV, 
modern boys and girls are much more traveled in 
real life than their mothers and fathers ever were. 
It's become an American custom to pack the kids 
into the family car and go places when vacation time 


130 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

comes along. Some fortunate families even fly off to 
Hawaii or Europe, as only the prosperous few once 

With all this knowledge and experience behind 
them, kids find that geography can be fun. As one 
boy said, "Geography is good because it lets us go 
places. Even if we had already been there it is still 
fun. Once upon a time I visited Mexico and thanks 
to geography I can revisit it again if I ever want to." 

Here's something to feel thankful for: 
"Only about 1 A of the world is land. America is 
lucky to be mainly on this 1 A dry part/' 

From Hawaya to Belchum 131 

Or, as another boy who was a little more concerned 
about it said, "While we spend all our time worrying 
about Russia, more than % of the world remains 
under water/' 

Perhaps those two students were thinking of the 
fate of the legendary Atlantis, which a boy defined as 
"a continent somebody misplaced thousands of years 

Let's take a trip with our junior geographers, and 
see what they've mapped out in their minds: 

* * 

Hawaya is a relaxed state and people do nothing 
mostly except sit and sway and palm trees too. 

132 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Belchum is found in between France and Germany 
on most maps. 

* * 

Weather they live in Northern or Southern Poland, 
the Poles have the coldest spots on earth. 

* * 

One of the most unusual sights in Italy is a leaning 
tower of pizza. 


* * 

Population is thickening steadily in the lumbar re- 
gions of Canada. 

The globe comes to a point as you reach either pole 
because everything shrinks in the cold. 

I think our state is the most beautitul in the wnoie 
country. Of course I may be a little pregnant. 

From Hawaya to Belchum 


The Antarctic is like the regular arctic, but ritzier. 

Canada and Australia have several things in com- 
mon. For one they are both in the Common 
Wealth and for another they are both far apart. 

Although America is spread rather thin in other 
places, it is good and thick in the Rocky Moun- 
tain area. 

134 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

It used to be thought that we had 48 states in 
America. Then someone counted again and 
there was 50. 

* * 

New York is better than Los Angeles because you 
can get out of school there sometimes. Los An- 
geles don't have blizzards or snow or anything 
swell like that. 

* * 

The Mississippi River is very important to us so that 
we will have a way to get from one side to an- 


* * 

The great plains are called that because they are so 
flat that even the largest plains can land there. 

While passing through Kansas, a typhoon is really 
not a hurricane but a tornado. 

From Hawaya to Belchum 


a o 


There is hardly any winter in Miami. They passed a 
law or something. 

More people live in Road Island than is possible. 

Some parts of the Grand Canyon are a mile deep and 
two miles high. 

136 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

It can most of the time be said that it never rains in 


* * 

I am sorry I don't know about the high Sierras, or 
how they got that high. 

East of New York, it has been found that railroad 
travel is faster by boat. 


*** *** 

Although there was once no water in the Gulf of 
Mexico, the people who named it somehow 
knew that water was coming. 

* * 

Greece is just a little spot on the map. 

* * 

Argentina people are not called Argentines. Their 
pronunciation is some-what different. They pro- 
nounce themselves Argentenians. 

From Hawaya to Belchum 


(Why did Magellan travel completely around the 


> < 

Mesopotamia was located between the Tigeress and 
the deep blue Euphrates. 

In Africa they write messages on their dum dums. 

138 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Sailors have learned never to start across the Pacific 
in anything that weighs more than the Pacific 

* * 


An arroyo is a deep place hallowed by wind and rain. 

A kindly climate is one where the weather is nice to 


* * 

When any place has an earthquake, guess what 
caused it? That is as good a guess as anybodie's 
since no one knows for sure. 


* * 

There are no directions at the North Pole, but there 
is no place up there to go anyhow. 


* * 

As the Arabian Arabs wandered threw the hot vast- 
less desert they came upon a strange tree that 

From Hawaya to Belchum 139 

grew there by itself which is one thing that made 
it such a strange tree. 

By learning that Krakston is located between Su- 
matra and Java, I now know three places I can 
look for instead of just one. 

In France the word for seven is sept. One day they 
will think and see it should be July. 

Some of my directions I get confused as exampled in 
N is from W left no right no up no S no E, so 

140 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Men who know have figured out that if Mt. Everest 
was thrown into the deep downmost part of the 
ocean it would all be under water, so we know 
not to go to all the trouble. 


The Colorado River is harnessed by a Hoover D . 

Ships can take a shortcut through the Sewage Canal 
if they are in that much of a hurry. 

From Hawaya to Belchum 141 

When it is day in America it is night in China. They 
are a backward country. 

* * 

Wives cost a lot of money in Africa. They aren't 
worth anything here. 


* * 

The high lamas of Tibet have long silky hair. 



Oxford is where they make a low type of shoe. 

Until the missionaries came, the cannibals ate each 


:* < 


( What was the Colossus of Rhodes?) 
Route 66? 

142 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

The Swiss people are always yodeling and ringing 
bells. Other people have let them be for hun- 
dreds of years. 

* * 

The people in Holland believe in storks. 


*** *** 

The country of the Amazons is full of wild women. 

* * 


People in Spain take naps every afternoon. This is 
called a sombrero. 


* * 


It is so hot that the natives wear very few clothes in 
the Spicy Islands. 

* * 

The Shetland Islands are in the Horse Latitudes. 

From Hawaya to Belchum 143 

Food can be grown in dry areas if you irritate the 

(What do we call the land Down Under?) 
Dirt, mostly. 

Latitude is so we can travel straight across the world 
instead of just up and down. 

(Where are the Appalachian Mountains?) 
Right there on the map. 

The French people drink wine but they used to have 
some famous Bourbons. 

The Solomon islands are full of wise old men. 

144 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

The Swiss people are quite high and the Dutch are 
the lowest. 

The Chinese like rotten eggs and make soup from 
birds nests. They can have it. 


California is a great place to visit, but I wouldn't 
want to leave there. 



Hearts Are for Valentines 

What are little boys made of? 
Snips and snails, and puppy-dogs' tails; 
That's what little boys are made of. 
What are little girls made of? 
Sugar and spice, and everything nice; 
That's what little girls are made of. 


I EXT TO THE all-important question of where he 
came from, a child seems to be fascinated most by 
what he's made of. He learns very early in life what 
his eyes and ears and hands and feet are for, but 
soon he begins wondering about his insides . . . his 
brain, his heart, his stomach, and all the rest of those 
mysterious innards that his parents say he has. 

One of my own favorite lines is a kid's definition of 
a spinal column: 


146 Kids Sure Rite Funnyl 

"The spine is a bunch of bones. Your head sits on 
one end and you sit on the other." 

That's plain enough, but here's another about 
bones that's sure to slow you down for a moment or 

"If you are just a skeleton, you are still yourself, 
but nobody could tell by looking at you, because 
your looks are gone." 

Here's a logical idea: 

"Bones are what keep us from being too sloppy and 

A young man of a more scientific turn of mind 
made a discovery of his own about the heart: 

"It is thought by most that there is but one heart 
for each of us. But I am thinking we may soon find 
others. I myself have felt them in my rist and head 
for two more. Some day others may find these and 
other places." 

What's a brain for? 

"The brain is what tells every thing else to get 
busy and do around." 

What about the eyes? 

"My eyes look out in the light and see things for 
my brain, where very little light exists." 

And the ears? 

"Without ears I would not be able to hear all the 
sounds I hear like WHOOoooo. Gik Gak. Eeeeaaaooo. 
FLIBEFLABOS. flibeflabos. But sometimes I am 
happy I have ears." 

Hearts Are for Valentines 147 

The nerves? 

"Nerves are what we need to get messages up to 
the brain. And they let you face anybody and be a 

If you're one of those people who keep intending 
to go on a diet but never do it, here's something to 
think about: 

"A calorie is the heat needed to raise the tempera- 
ture of one gram of water one degree. So people 
count their calories because if they eat too many of 
them, they will boil over." 


^J K 

148 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Let's investigate a few more little-known "facts" 
about anatomy: 

* * 

Blood keeps going because the heart keeps pushing 
on it and never lets it rest. I have known some 
people like this. 


* * 

At first we eat to grow. After that is done it is more 
to be soshable. 

Located between the neck and the schoulder is the 


* * 

There are 64 bones in our arms and only 62 in our 
legs. The mistake is yet to be found. 

* *: 

We humans are both vertebrates and mammals. You 
see we are smart enough to know how to be both 
at the same time. 

Hearts Are for Valentines 


The difference between bones and skeletons are the 
same except we live ones have bones while the 
dead ones have skeletons. 

A naked eye is so small it cannot be seen unmicro- 

Light enters our eye through our corona. 

150 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Without brains, people would not even know enough 
not to blow them out. 

My digestive system is long and hollow but squisched 
together until I grow more room for it. 


* * 

We have nerves so that they can carry electrick volts 
around in our body so it can get used to it. 
Then if we run into to many volts, it takes 
more of them to kill us than if we had not had 


Our brains look like chewed up bubble gum. 


* * 

Blood vessels are teeny boats that carry blood all 
through us. 


Without lungs the body would not get the fresh air 
it needs to live, so the lungs are on our side. 

Hearts Are for Valentines 


When you are standing, the tibia is just north of the 

(How much does the human brain weigh?) 

It depends on whether its a mans or a womans 
and I thought you were going to ask about the 

* * 

Genes are things you have whether you want them or 

152 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Standing on your legs too long gives you very close 


* * 

The well rounded person is made up of both brains 
and bronze. 

* * 

We breathe through our nostrums. 

* * 

(Of what value is the human heart?) 

It is good to listen to and talk about if nothing 
happened on the news. 


> < 

Red spots on you can come from germs, or bites, or 
maybe you have an energy. 

* * 

I try not to confuse adenoids with asteroids, being 
different in one way or another. 

Hearts Are for Valentines 


Hearts are useful for valentines and causing people 
to marry. 


Man is really faster than we might think. Nerve sig- 
nals can travel to the brain at about 200 miles 
an hour 11 Misfortunately, we have not yet 
thought out how to run that fast with our out- 

154 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Even in pre-history, men and monkeys have always 
had four fingers and a thumb in common. That 
is they don't have the very same fingers and 
thumb in common, but a set to each so we don't 
have to pass them around or exchange them or 
oh skip it. 


* * 

Unhealthy bodys are the dead kind. 

* * 

The alimentary canal connects Lake Erie and the 
Hudson River. 

* * 

Going down our human neck we find the sacougha- 
gus, telling us when to cough. 

The lungs keep breatheing in good air and making it 
bad and breatheing it out. It is human nature to 
be wasteful like this. 

Hearts Are for Valentines 
Your colateral is what you have behind you. 


Let us consider for a moment the word chestf alien. 
Here is another tricky one. It is not at all what 
you might think since men are also sometimes. 

You will get flat feet if any arches fall down on you. 

156 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

While man has pores, mold has spores. It is one way 
to tell us apart. 


* * 

The chest cavity in the body is called the borax. 


* * 

We should all be grateful to Pasteur for inventing 


After a Siege of Health 

.HERE WAS a time when a kid submitted to a Satur- 
day night bath if his mother could catch him and 
that was his one and only sacrifice to the ideals of 
health and hygiene. But kids today are at the mercy 
of well-meaning teachers, doctors and nurses who 
study, poke, prod and vaccinate them at every turn. 
Health is the watchword of the schools, and our re- 
luctant kids are much the better for this new empha- 
sis on soap and towel. Kids used to need excuses to 
stay out of school; now they need written explana- 
tions of their sniffles so they can stay in. 

What do the kids think of this relentless drive to- 
ward cleanliness? Here's what one young health 
enthusiast wrote: 

"One important health rule is to take a bath every 
day. I thought about it all last week." 



Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Another student was nothing less than brilliant in 
explaining the difference between health and hy- 

"Health is just keeping well while hygiene is being 
clean about it" 

The boys and girls that I enjoy talking to the most 
aren't always the straight-A paragons who can be de- 
pended on to echo back all the right answers. The 
ones who are the most fun conversationally are the 
ad-libbers of the schoolrooms, those dauntless char- 
acters with free-wheeling imaginations who never 
hesitate to try their luck at guessing when they don't 
know an answer. I prize a good, top-flight, experi- 
enced guesser because he's learning to think things 
out for himself. He's not content just to sit back and 

After a Siege of Health 159 

wait for teacher to fill in all the blanks in his knowl- 
edge. Instead, he studies a problem, fits together 
what facts he already knows, and takes a long, 
soaring leap to a conclusion. Guessers are glori- 
ous chance-takers , . . and they're at their funniest 
when they come a cropper, as these did: 

"Angina Pectoris was a famous heart doctoress." 
"The Hippocratic oath is when one swears never 
again to be Hippocratical." 

"Scurry is a disease caused by too fast living." 
"One hypodemic equals ten epidemics/' 
"An epicure is used to cure epidemics." 
"High places will give you highdrophobia." 
"Hives are caused from fooling around with bees." 
Another weakness of mine is for punsters the ones 
who pun unintentionally, like these: 

"Now we know how to pasturize our cows by 
milking them in pastures." 

"Infantigo is one of the diseases of infanthood." 
"Rats carry the blue bonnet plague." 
"Don't forget to not look in the sun as you travel or 
you will get a migrate headache." 

"Infectious Hepatitis is a lover ailment." 
Here are some more medical tips and ideas: 


It is important to stay and get plenty of rest after a 
siege of health. 

160 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

False doctrine was like when they took blood out of 
sick people. 

Only doctors know how to unbutton belly buttons. 

You must take it easy if your heart attacks you. 

After a Siege of Health 161 

When they picked the bicycle off me I was found to 
have many critical cuts and bruises, but the 
sprung ankle was propably my best injury. 

Meat helps build strong bones and muscles while 
carrots prefer to build your eyes. 

When it rains we should take care to protect our 
bodies and our selves from it. 

162 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Appendecitis is caused by unflamed appendixes. 

All those hotter than 100 are of a bad temper. 

Tho we don't know it all yet, mankind is learning 
much about good health. We know for example 

that in order to live forever we need only 

This is as far as we have learned so far. 

* * 

Many of the wonder drugs of the 1940s were known 
as Suffer Drugs but they were necessary to get 

* * 

For anyone who actually wants to get as clean as pos- 
sible, he should make sure to work the soap into 
a lathe. 

After a Siege of Health 163 

Although we use oxygen to breathe, we do so know- 
ing that it can cause rust. It is another case of a 
mixed blessing. 


: < 

Sure iodine is bitter. But if we don't eat enough, 
gourds will soon grow in our throwts. 

* * 

In order to prevent rabies, a rabid dog should be in- 
serted in the bloodstream. 

Inside each ear we have a hammer, an anvil and a 
stirrup. So the ears have a good excuse to ache 

The black plaque began with an acking in the middle 
ages and soon spread all over Europe. 

162 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Appendecitis is caused by unflamed appendixes. 


> 4 

All those hotter than 100 are of a bad temper. 

Tho we don't know it all yet, mankind is learning 
much about good health. We know for example 

that in order to live forever we need only 

This is as far as we have learned so far. 


Many of the wonder drugs of the 1940s were known 
as Suffer Drugs but they were necessary to get 


* : 

For anyone who actually wants to get as clean as pos- 
sible, he should make sure to work the soap into 
a lathe. 

After a Siege of Health 163 

Although we use oxygen to breathe, we do so know- 
ing that it can cause rust. It is another case of a 
mixed blessing. 

Sure iodine is bitter. But if we don't eat enough, 
gourds will soon grow in our throwts. 

* * 

In order to prevent rabies, a rabid dog should be in- 
serted in the bloodstream. 

Inside each ear we have a hammer, an anvil and a 
stirrup. So the ears have a good excuse to ache 

The black plaque began with an acking in the middle 
ages and soon spread all over Europe. 

164 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Each generation is living longer than the one before 
it. Proof of this is the many more grandparents 
we see alive today as compared with great- 

One of the most painful of the minor injuries is the 
home grown toenail. 


Hie inore %centage of alcohol in your blood the 
worst you are. But don'd worry because you 
canot get more than 100% cent. 

After a Siege of Health 165 

A bruise is caused when you hit or blow your skin. 

* * 

Drowners are usually pretty soon saved by artificial 

:* * 


I have been vacinated for smallpox. Or against small- 
pox whichever is the usual custom. 

Some doctors on the moon claim they know a way 
to reduce many 250 pd persons to only 42 pds. 


* * 

It is healthiest to inhale deeply before you expire. 

* * 

The people who suffer most are the ones with dis- 
eases in remote areas. 

166 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

To stay healthy every day, we need plenty of fresh 
exercise. And be sure to get your share of sleep 
and air. 

It does your body no good to rool it down the stairs. 

* * 

Stay on the left side if you walk down a street. Don t 
let them get you from behind. 

After a Siege of Health 167 

A trip is fine if you need a good relaxative. 


:* *: 


(What is first aid?) 

First aid is your chance to get better before the 
doctor gets you. 

* * 


Not enough vitamins causes a lot of rackets. 

* * 

When people get old they can't bear children. 

* * 


When your combustion is bad, you feel loggy. 

Gout is caused by rich food. We should remember to 
eat poor food. 

168 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

We should worry more about our drinking of water 
or we will all get polluted. 

Doctors must be very careful to inscribe drugs be- 
cause fatal doses can often be harmful. 



Some Trees Just Stand 

_ OF THE funniest skits that I've ever seen fea- 
tured comedian Sid Caesar as a German doctor who 
was an internationally known authority on health. 
When a reporter asked him why some trees live hun- 
dreds of years longer than man, Dr. Caesar drew 
himself up proudly and explained: 

"Good posture!" 

To me, that line was a stroke of comic genius; and 
yet that's exactly the kind of thought a child might 
have about the long lives of the stately Sequoias. Lis- 
ten to these on trees: 

"Some trees give us berries or cherries or plums. 
Others are content to just sit and add another ring/' 



Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

"All trees are either evergreen or broadleaf . If you 
are a tree, you have to make up your mind." 

"The sequoias are the higgest of all Indians. One 
was so big they had to cut a road through him." 

"Have you ever wondered how a cottonwood tree 
can have both cotton and wood in it? I will tell you 
that so have I.** 

Sometimes a new bit of information is turned up- 
side down in a child's mind, and comes out like this: 

"One reason for our scarecity of timber is because 
much of our timber supply is used in the making of 

Some Trees Just Stand Around 171 

Or this one: 

"Trees come in forests that some people can't see 
them for/* 

Let's turn over a few more leaves, and see what we 


* * 


One blade of rye has about four million roots if, 
streatched end to end, would surprise many 


* * 


If a person is up against a cactus he must touch it. 
But if he is up against a tough proposition he 
does not have to be thus touching. 


* * 

When you cover your housetop with leaves and vines 
and such, you have yourself a hatched roof. 


* * 

In the Fall it is called that to let the leaves know 
what to do. 

172 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Many plants have been named after animals such as 
fox gloves, tiger lilies, and dandy lions. 

An early spring wild flower is the trillium. There are 
about that many then. 

How anybody could mistake fur tree needles for fur 
I will never know. 

Some Trees Just Stand Around 173 

Balsam needles are so soft and flat that they are 
really not good for anything except balsam 

* * 


One way we can tell white pines and red pines apart 
is one has more needles than the other. Remem- 
ber this and you can never mistake them for 
each other. 

One of the prettiest but saddest sighted trees is the 
weepy willow. 

* * 

Pine trees give us Christmas and Turpentine. 


I don't know why they call the dogwood that unless 
because of its bark. 

174 Kids Sure Rite Funny/ 

As soon as a tree has enough water and air, it can 
have a sort of sugar made. The sun then takes 
over and does the work while the tree does the 

* * 

Tree trunks have the purpose of connecting the 
leaves and the roots. 


* * 


When winter comes, trees store all their sap away in 
trunks that they keep for the occasion. 


* * 

Orchids usually grow fast to other plants (not 
quickily, but gripily). 

The cotton plant has very thin threads called fibbers. 
Just because, I guess. 

* * 


The kind of grass I am thinking of is a dark green 
kind. It might be any kind of grass on the other 

Some Trees Just Stand Around 175 

hand, so long as the other kind is not the kind 
I am thinking of. 

Fig leaves are smaller than they should be. 

The drabest appearing lawn can soon be changed 
with a short swig of verbita. 

176 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

There are two plants in the Thallus family, Algae 
Thallus and Fungi Thallus (both of a common 


Fall comes when the leaves are no longer tight. 

* * 

Many of our weeds need some form of birth control. 


* * 

Violets are not always. They may be whites or yel- 

* * 

Seeds should be buried whether they are dead or not. 

By the time they get full grown, most wild roses are 


be on the at- 

by the 

Actually the is not 

it a 

it a 


on the of a 



Pies, Squares and 

As I was going to St. Ives 

I met a man with seven wives, 

Each wife had seven sacks, 

Each sack had seven cats, 

Each cat had seven kits; 

Kits, cats, sacks, and wives, 

How many were there going to St. Ives? 

JLJEARNING ARITHMETIC at school used to be a fixed 
routine of counting apples and oranges, slicing up 
pies, and occasionally working puzzles involving 
such characters as the man going to St. Ives or that 
remarkahle farmer-and-a-half who could plow an 
acre-and-a-half in a day-and-a-half . Then came mul- 


Pies, Squares and Wrecktangles 179 

tiplication tables, with the best kids learning their 
twelves, and lessons in pushing a decimal point 
around. Some boys and girls struggled even higher 
into the mysteries of mathematics, learning how to 
hunt down algebra's elusive character known as X, 
and trying vainly in geometry class to square a circle. 

Today's kids must learn the same basic skills, but 
they are growing up in a whole new age of com- 
puters. As one girl said, "Thanks to our computers, 
we can now solve complicated problems by twinkling 
an eye." If only it were that simplel The truth is that 
now that we're having machines figure all our most 
difficult problems for us, we're also finding out that 
we need far more trained mathematicians to tell 
those computers what to do. 

So now the question arises, how are today's future 
computer experts doing in the classroom? Judging by 
their examination papers, they're just as bewildered 
as any generation before them: 

"A hypotenoose is a humane device for hanging 
criminals from a 90 degree angle/' 

"If your triangles get four sides you have wreck- 

"In area, a circle is a pie or square." 

Here's a statement that came straight from the 
heart of its frustrated writer: 

"Pythagoras advanced geometry to the point where 
it is no longer understandable." 

180 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

A backhanded compliment to the Arabs came out 
like this: 

"The Moslems invented the zero and showed us 
how to think of nothing/* 

How would you define a circle? Here's as good a 
way as any: 

"A circle is a square with all the corners smoothed 


ThereVe been many mysteries about the pyramids 

Pies, Squares and Wrecktangles 181 

of Egypt, but one scholar thought he'd unearthed yet 
another one: 

"Men in charge of these pyramids checked every 
slab to make sure they were plum. A secret that dies 
with them was plum what/* 

Suppose we "plum" a few more mysteries of arith- 

Why I am taking algebra is because I hear that some 
thoughts cannot be thought without thinking in 
algebra. Although I have never had such 
thoughts, I am expecting. 

I have never seen a square root, but, then, also, I 
never dig trees. 

Of course there are no such figures as 6/5's. They 
are only figures of speech. 

182 Kids Sure Rite Funnyl 

So as not to get mixed up, I always try to say integers 
in arithmetic because some girls as well as arith- 
metic have figures. But no girl integers. 

If we were to take 17 and 4/8hs. from 22 and 2/4hs. 
we would have exactly 5 approximately. 

The circumference will tell you how fat the circle is. 

Pies, Squares and Wrecktangles 183 

Arith. is like doing numbers only the problems are 
worked in a harder way. It is mainly for showing 

* * 

A million is bigger than the largest known whale. 

* * 

Ten meters equal a diameter. 


Statistics show that the majority of P.T.A. members 
are married. 


* * 

I have found infinity to be easier to say than what it 

The minuend is the number from which the minuet 
is subtracted. 

184 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Axioms and postulates are the same. We have both 
of them in case we forget the word for one of 

Triangles are often called isosceles to make them 
sound more important. 

When a period is surrounded by numbers it is a 

* * 

Because of numbers we can figure out what happens 
if we have ten apples and do something. This is 
important to some people. 

Pies, Squares and Wrecktangles 185 

When you multiply widths by lengths you don't have 
either any more. You have areas. 

Square objects are rectangular while round ones are 

* * 

(Since today is April 19th, what will the date be six- 
teen days from now?) 
It will be over to May the somethingth. 

When we speak of a thing being mean, we know it is 
just the average of the way things are today. 

* * 

When rulers are not human, they have twelve inched 

I am hopping for the day when we can have num- 
bers without arithmetic. 

186 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

A centipede is a worm measureable only in the metric 

A square is where one of its sides is all the same. 

A tangerine is a line going past a circle. 

If you are looking for an X, algebra will help find it. 

A circle should look good and round and come out 
even where it started. 

and 18? 

are if are 

on foot, 

it is ten at in Los te 

it in 

I don't My me go to 


Webster's Whoppers 

N THE DAY a child first learns to say "Mama," his 
own personal adventure into the world of language is 
well under way. He is already an expert in communi- 
cating in babyish ways, such as crying, fussing, 
laughing and gurgling. But now he is beginning to 
realize that there are different meanings for each 
word cooed over his crib, and that the sweet nothings 
murmured by his mother aren't really nothings after 
all. So from this day forward, a child reaches out with 
all he has to grasp every syllable that he hears. There 
will be hundreds of comical times ahead when he 
will stumble over meanings by mistaking one "sound- 
alike" word for another. Foreigners do the same 
thing. But teachers tell me that half -learning a word 
incorrectly is often the first step to learning it right 
, . . so let's be philosophical about riffling through the 


Webster's Whoppers 189 

following pages of Webster's Whoppers, and enjoy 
this dictionary of fractured English: 

ABSTAIN means to stop. But make them say what. 
Those who are AMBIGUOUS can use either hand. 
An ANCESTOR is an extinct relative. 
ANOMALOUS has an abnormal meaning. We were 

never told what it was. 
An AQUEDUCK is the kind that knows how to 



A BAMBOO is a thing useful to scare small kids. 

BANDANAS are for bandats faces. 

A BEDROLL is a pastry outdoorsmen like to take to 

bed with them. 
If you are BILINGUAL you must only speak twiest 

a day. 
The BRIGADIER GENERAL is the general in 

charge of the brig. 

BUGLES are used by the Army to revile the troops. 
BURDEN is where burs go for the winter. 
A BUTTRESS is a lady butler. 


Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Although I have heard of CHAPS that were people 
if they were English, they were worn around the 
legs if they were cowboys. 

CLAIRBOYANT is playing like you can see things 
that aren't there. 

COLLECTIVE ... a plate they hand around at Sun- 
day School. 

A CORPORAL is the lowest noncommitted officer. 

COTTON GIN is some hard coke made from the 
cotton plant. 

Webster's Whoppers 191 

A COURTSHIP is the royal boat where the king 

does it. 

CURATE is how fast you get well. 
A CURRENT is a seedless raisin found in electric 



DEPORT is to export without their wanting to go. 

DISENGAGE is not to get married. 

DUMB people, as we know, cannot talk. Some of the 
dumb ones I know can, yes, but they are the ex- 
ceptions that prove the rule. 


ECLAIRS are cookies with insides. 
ENTOMOLOGY is the study of how to entomb peo- 
ple scientifically. 

EXCOMMUNICATION is done with paper bulls. 
An EXPOSITION is the last job you lost. 

FABRICATED is something that doesn't really exist 
like a fabricated house. 


Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

A FREUD is someone that claims he is somebody he 


GAME PRESERVES are something like jello that 
you can play with if you want to before puting it 
on the toast. 

GERMINATE is to visit Germany. 

A GIGOT is a gigolo of the opposing sex. 

A GOBLET is a baby turkey. 

A GRAM is the weight of one of that type cracker. 


HALF SISTERS are caused by magicians. 

Webster's Whoppers 193 

An HOBBY is something a person enjoys doing that 

is none of his business. 
A HUMANE is a nicer type human. 
There is no such thing as a HUMBUG but it is old 

and groachy when there is. 
HYPOTHESIS is the name of an ancient guessing 

game. The Greeks played it all the time. 


INCONGRUOUS means being elected to the Senate 

or the House. 

INCONSISTANT means like tHiS. 
An INTERNE is something like a backward U-turne. 

194 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

IONS are certain kinds of electric particles. VWben 
they get old they change to eons. 


A JAGUAR is a mammal You can tell by feeling it's 
hair if you really want to know that bad. 

The chief value of the JAPANESE BEETLE is yet to 
be discovered. 


There is this word beginning with K that I remember 
the definition but I forget the word. 

Whoppers 195 

A KINESCOPE is a magic glass to look at your rela- 
tives and other kin through. 

LATIN is the Language of the Dead. 

LAUNCH is the one between breakfast and supper. 
A LIVERY is a horsed skin made into a uniform. 
A LOCKET is a lockable locker. 


A MAGNATE is a big businessman who has such en- 

196 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

joyments as spinning a compass and pointing to the 

north pole. 

A MALLET is a wooden-headed duck. 
MAROON is a color that often gets lost. 
A MIRACLE is something that can't happen until it 


A MIRAGE is an optional illusion. 
MOCCASINS are snakes that the Indians make shoes 

MONKEY RENCHES are where they grow tame 



When a man makes up his mind to do a good thing 
and really does it, that is a NEW YEARS REVO- 

A NICHE is what in time saves nine. 


OGLES and OGRES are two horrible type monsters. 

But one just looks at you and the other one eats 

An OHM is an English home. 

Webstei's Whoppers 


OMNIVEROUS means jumpy like saying omniver- 

ous as a cat. 
OUTLAWS are black-sheep inlaws. 

PARTIAL POST is when they forgot some of the 

A PERTINACIOUS is a thing that makes you believe 

things. Woodrow Wilson had one of these. 
PHARMACY is the study of pharming. 
When a person has a PHOTOGRAPHIC MEMORY 

198 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

it means he is able to remember anything he hears 
after only one time. It doesn't have to be repeated 
because it is not necessary to repeat it if he has a 
photographic memory. 

PICKLES are a bit too much. 

A PLASTIC SURGEON can take years off people by 
lifting their faces behind their ears. 

A POTION is a portion of some southeni type drink. 

QUARTZ is a very useful glassy-like mineral. Much 
of our milk is bottled in quartz. 


Remembering a past experience is known as RE- 
REINS are used mostly on horses. Only kings can 

use them on people and then only if they spell 

them reigns. 
RESERVATION is a word spoken by Indians. What 

it means is "do you have a place to stay in this 

A REVAMP is a lady monster repaired to attract mem 

REVERE means to daydream. But not the Paul kind 

of Revere. 

WebsteSs Whoppers 199 

RIFF RAFTS are the kind that come apart in the 
middle of the water. 

A SABLE is an expensive place to keep horses, being 

fur-lined and everything. 
SCALES are found on snakes and pianos. 
A SPINSTER is an unmarried wife. 

200 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

A STAFF is a rod with a crook on the end. The crook 
has to stay either there or in jail. 

A STEREOPTICON is a surgeon who prefers to op- 
erate by lantern light. 

TAXIDERMOLOGY is the study of how to stuff 

taxis (with people, supposably). 
TEAR can either be that you are crying or ripping. 

At least these and maybe more that I will tell you 

about when you tell them to us. 
THANKSGIVING is for thinking about good things 

and being thankful for them even if you happen 

to be without any. 


UNANIMOUS means not to be animous. 
URANUS is a planet we find located somewhere 
near the universe. 


VETERINARIANS are animals who were in the 

VITAMINS are a way we can measure for no one 

getting malnutritions. 

WebsteSs Whoppers 



A WATERSPOUT is a wet tornado. 

A WELL TEMPERED ax means that say there is a 

cherry tree. If it is well tempered it will not chop 

it down without good reason. 
A WHALE is much larger than I believe. 

X's are becoming close to extinct, being used mainly 

just for signing and kissing. 
XERIC means arid when I can think what that 


While the YAK is taken for granted by many Tibet- 
ans, most authorities take them for mammals. 

202 Kids Sure Rite Funnyl 

In the ZEBRA we see how nature so wonderfully 
protects through protective coloration. It is pres- 
ently threatened with extinction. 


History on the Rocks 


J-o MOST KIDS in grammar school, a fossil is anybody 
over the age of 35. The idea of even older fossils, the 
rocky kind that were formed millions and millions of 
years ago, just can't be grasped by boys and girls who 
are newcomers to earth themselves. Of course, man 
himself has learned to read the history of the earth 
from its geology only in the past century or two. Only 
now can we decipher from rocks the ancient dramas 
of great mountain ranges and even whole continents 
thrusting up above the seas, or plunging beneath the 
waves ... of seas and islands that are no more . . . 
of great ice ages, and days when the northern regions 
had a tropical climate ... of the timid, tiny creatures 
that first crept out of the oceans and became the an- 
cestors of all the animals on land . . . and of the enor- 
mous dinosaurs that once walked the earth. 


204 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Geology is quite a complex subject, so it's hardly 
surprising that our school kids would become con- 
fused about it. Even adults are seldom sure about the 
difference, for example, between stalactites and 
stalagmites, so you can sympathize with the boy who 
dodged the question completely, like this: 

"Hanging down and pointing up in some caves, we 
find satellites and satellmites." 

One of the most intriguing things to me about a 
child's mind is not what he thinks but why he thinks 
it. Suppose a child learns in Sunday School that there 
is a devil in a hot place down below. Then on Mon- 
day the boy trudges off to school where he's told that 
the lava from volcanoes comes from a very hot place 
down below, inside the earth. It's only natural for 
him to put these two thoughts together and say what 
one boy said on his examination paper: 

"Granite is made in a deep fire under the earth. I 
think you can guess who makes it." 

Here's another bit of reasoning that seems to make 

"We call a small rock 'pebble,' and we call a big 
rock 'bolder.' Being bigger, they are." 

And here's something I never knew before: 

"Many rocks are made by the underground." 

Did you know there are live caves as well as dead 
caves? Neither did I, but one boy assures us: 

"You can tell if a cave is alive or dead by checking 
around its spelunks," 

History on the Rocks 205 

Here are more thoughts by junior geologists: 

Caves are hollowed out by ground water, if the water 
is ground just right. 

Living things of our own time have not yet had time 
to turn to fossils. Men in geology are waiting 
anxiously so they can study them also. 



Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

A rock weighs less under water in case I ever want 
to know. 

Some rocks have bands in them. The streaky kind. 
No music. 

It is against the rules to pick up a Petrified Forest. 

History on the Rocks 207 

To understand how lava works, I think of a cold 
lump of clay. I am not sure about it yet but I am 
still thinking. 

All volcanos one day get old and die. After it has 
just sat there for awhile, all the heat goes. We 
call the rock around it igneous and that is that. 

A great deal of our present-day supply of oil comes 
from underground. 

Many of the dead animals of the past changed to dirt 
or oil while others decided to be fossils. 

208 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

(What might we expect to find at the bottom of a 

If all the salt in the ocean was piled together, there 
would be too much of it. 


What lodestones are loded with are magnets. 


* * 


Limestone is useful for building. Building buildings 

Rocks made under water are called sentimentary 

Mesomorphic rock is a long and skinny kind. 

History on the Rocks 
Batholites allow the formation of copper or 


Most of our caves were made by water eating away 
at the rock. Some of our larger caves show just 
how much rock water can sometimes eat. 

No living fossils have been found as yet. 

With the discovery of fire, man learned how to make 
rocks. These fire made rocks are called ingene- 
ous rocks. 

The most outstanding thing about sandstone is to 
remember it can even be made under water. 

210 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Water can wear away a rock until it is completely 
unvisible. But dont expect it to happen in one 
class period. 

* * 

Several crystals can sometimes be melted and hard- 
ened into one piece except they would no longer 
be crystals so you might just as well not. 

* * 

Geysers are like us all and have to let off steam some- 

* * 

Quicksand is either waterey sand or sandey water, 
but it is to dangerus to really see which. 


Basalt does not, as you might think, taste as you 
might think it might. 


* * 

I know all rocks are very old. I do not know what 
they were as children. 

on th0 ill 

A of is not one at aU. 

When a It is 





Chemists Anonymous 

-AKE ONE LITTLE BOY, mix him up thoroughly with 
several pounds of strange facts, then shake him up 
with an examination, and you have the perfect for- 
mula for instant confusion. Whether you personally 
happened to sail through or sleep through your own 
classes in chemistry and physics, you'll probably find 
as much fun as I did in the next few pages of the 
better bloopers in the basic sciences. You'll find ideas 
and theories that have never occurred to the most 
eminent of modern researchers. You'll also discover, 
I suspect, that even such complex, no-nonsense sub- 
jects as chemistry and physics can become absurdly 
funny when seen through the eyes of children. 

One blase little fellow wasn't too impressed with 
what he was learning about the elements, so he 


Chemists Anonymous 213 

"After chemists went to all the trouble to learn 
how to mix iron and oxygen, they only came up with 
rust. So it doesn't pay to get too fancy/' 

Here's something else to think about: 

"Some people use salt to freeze ice cream while 
others use it to melt snow. One day we will see who is 

A warning came from a youngster who obviously 
thinks we are letting our scientific discoveries run 
away with us, for he said this: 

"We must be careful about making too much nylon 
out of our coal, air and water. For what good would 
all the nylon in the world do us if we used up all our 
coal or air or water?" 

Another budding young scientist was more opti- 
mistic, assuring his teacher that: 

"I haven't worked out how to change salt water to 
fresh water, but I will do it this weekend." 

Kids often ponder over puzzlers that adults would 
never think about, like this one: 

"Some oxygen molecules help fires to burn while 
others choose to help make water, so sometimes it 
is brother against brother/' 

Here's a wild guesser at work: 

"Photosynthesis is a way plants have of taking pic- 
tures of synthesises. Then they eat them." 

There may not be a Nobel Prize winner in the lot, 
but I think the kids who wrote the rest of these de- 

214 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

serve some kind of a prize for imaginative confu- 


* * 

In looking at a drop of water under a microscope, we 
find that there are twice as many H's as O's. 

Another word for fire is oxidation, but I think I will 
just stick with the first word and learn it good. 

Chemists Anonymous 215 

Some unscruplus men have made aspirin and other 
medicines out of old coal tar! 

* * 

There is nothing to keep a liquid from changing to 
another state. The Mississippi River, as we all 
know, does not have to stay in that state alone. 

* * 

To most people solutions mean finding the answer, 
but to chemistists solutions are things that are 
all mixed up. 


:* < 


As water rains down on us, some either evaporates 
directly or is absorbed by vegetation and then 
evaporated from the plants. I know all of this 
and understand a little of it. 

The chemicals in your body are exactly the same as 
those in the sea. This is something I won't know 
until I go to college. 


Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

A drinking tumbler can be made of glass or many 
other materials provided he is not the human 
kind of tumbler. 

Here is something. If water is mixed with vapor it is 
lighter than air. 


Water is the most common of everything we see. 

Chemists Anonymous 217 

The common table variety of vinegar is a weak solu- 
tion of asthetic acid. 

Coke is made by roasting soft coal in special ovens. 
Pepsis are made something like this. 

We must all learn to live together. The air has done 
it, And paper and milk and soil. 

* * 


Coal is made from sand and dead plants. Or if you 
will wait some millions of years you will have a 

218 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Bread gets mouldy because there is a whole glass of 
water in every loaf. 

Atoms were first made during world war two. 

* * 

One way to tell for sure if a sweater is of wool is to 
hold it over a flame. If it burnt slowly it was 

Chemists Anonymous 219 

A molecule is comprised mostly of things. 

* * 

As a puddle dries up, the water goes into the air. We 
say that the puddle evacuates. 


* * 

(What condition exists when there is 100% humidity 
in the atmosphere?) 
Everybody drownds. 

* * 

With all the uses to be made of rubber it was neces- 
sary to find a substitute. After all, rubber does 
not grow on trees. 



The Savage Brest and 
All That 

V^fNE OF MY favorite stories is about a concert vio- 
linist who went on a safari in Africa. After being 
separated from his party, he decided he might as 
well relax until they found him, so he took out his 
violin, sat down in the center of a large clearing, and 
began to play. Soon the animals of the jungle, en- 
tranced by the music, began stealing softly up 
through the bushes to form a circle around him. All 
their instinctive fears and hatreds were forgotten . . . 
a lion sat beside a wildebeest, a tiger next to a zebra, 
a monkey beside a leopard. As all the creatures sat 
there, great and small, spellbound by the music, a 
huge black panther suddenly leaped out into the cen- 
ter of the circle with a savage roar, seized the hapless 


The Savage Brest and All That 221 

violinist and killed him. Whereupon the lion, with 
tears in his eyes, turned sadly to the panther and 
said: "How could you do a thing like this when that 
music was so very beautiful?" And the old panther 
said, "Hey?" 

I was reminded of the unlucky violinist when I 
read this comment by a young music student: 

"The violin is an instrument that is much too popu- 
lar today/* 

Here are explicit instructions on how to play a 
rhythm instrument: 

"It is easy to teach anyone to play the maracas. 
Simply grip the neck firmly and shake him in 

222 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Another music student conjured up this vivid pic- 

"Probly the first of all instruments were the per- 
cussive. Even in the oldest civilizations available to- 
day where we find nothing else, we find natives 
beating on their tumtums." 

Speaking of "tumtums," one boy tells us this: 
"Just about any animal skin can be stretched over 

a frame to make a pleasant sound once the animal is 

You'll hear many a new sound as we now continue 

our musical tour of the classrooms: 

The Savage Brest and All That 223 

The baton (played by the conductor) is the most im- 
portant of all instruments. 

The lowest-noted strung instrument is the bass vile. 

A sextet is oh you know. 


It has been said that among all the instruments, the 
fife has one of the longest chronicles. Why this 
is so remarkable is how this could be in such a 
short instrument. 

* * 

The harp has to vibrate to all the strings it has be- 
cause of the shape it is in. 

A cello is sometimes called a violincello by those who 
aren't sure which. 

224 Kids Sure Rite Funny/ 

The english horn is neither english or a horn. Rather, 
it is an english horn because all the other instru- 
ment names had been taken. 

Music is good because of the influence it has on the 
savage brest and all that. 

Dirges were music written to be played at dirgeable 
launchings and crashes. 

I understand about ray and me and fa and all the rest 
except dough. How do we know where dough is 

The Savage Brest and All That 225 

to start? Once I get started I know where to go, 
but it is in dough that I get mixed up. 

To get the sound, accordions have bellows but they 
don't sound at all like that. 

* * 

The spinet was an olden piano you could play or 
so on. 


A bassoon looks like nothing I have ever heard. 


* * 

Bataan is noted for its manufacture of musical con- 
ducting sticks. 


* * 

I practise my piano every day unless it is rainy or 

226 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

The virginal was a keyboarded instrument only cer- 
tain ladies were allowed to use. 

* * 

A oboe is a instrument popular with the poorer folks. 

Friendshipwise, Mozart and Haydn were veryclose. 

* * 

My favorite composer is Pablo de Sarasate. I am 
looking forward to hearing some of his music. 

The Savage Brest and All That 227 

I would like for you to teach me to play the cello. 
Would tomorrow or Friday be best? 


* * 

Most good singers have at least a two-octane range. 

* * 

A thrombosis is an instrument you can make low 
sounds on a slide with. 

* * 

(Define syncopation.) 

Syncopation is not just boom boom. It is boom 
pa da boom or sometimes boom ca pa doodle da 
rest boom boom. 


* * 

As if it was not enough to compose all the music he 
did, Schubert did it all within the short 31 years 
that he lived. 

* * 

Podiums are somethings for conductors to step on. It 
helps their meanness. 

228 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

A piece of music is always spelled piece. Peace and 
music never go together. 

Minor keys are those allowable for children-com- 
posers under twenty-one. 

It is not known for certainty who wrote the Third 
Symphony. Some say Brahams and some say 
Baithoven and some say let them both. 

The Savage Brest and All That 229 

Since sound travels better through solid material 
than through water or air, music instruments are 
best when made out of solid materials rather 
than water or air. 

* * 

Schubert didn't make much money and we would 
hardly have heard of him if he hadn't written 
some music. 

My favorite instrument is the alto sex. 

When I have nothing else to do, I like to go off by 
myself with Beethoven's fifth. 




LARK TWAIN once defined a "classic" as "a book 
which people praise and don't read/' It's a funny line, 
but the joke is on Twain, because no less a writer 
than Ernest Hemingway once wrote that all modern 
American literature comes from one book by Mark 
Twain called Huckleberry Finn. So Twain stands 
contradicted by his own popularity ... by the mil- 
lions of boys and girls who love his classic work. As 
one boy wrote, "Huckleberry Fin was misf ortunately 
borned into poor poverty. He is my favorite book so 

Charles Dickens wrote so vividly that his charac- 
ters came alive and stepped right off the page, which 
of course is the test of the finest characterization. 
This makes for exciting and rewarding reading, but 
youngsters are sometimes upset to find the "bad" 




people as real as the "good" people. Here's what one 
boy had to say about the characters in Dickens' 
A Christmas Carol: 

"A real spooky story was to be found in this one 
about a man named Scrooge who has a night mare 
with goasts and chanes and everything. Others in 
the book are Tiny Tim and his father and mother and 
others. My crit. for this story would be it would be 
better if they left Scrooge out. It was because of him 
that things got bad and mizary pervailed. I might 
add that I saw the movie of this book last year, hav- 
ing liked it some better even after still using Scrooge." 

Another youngster who learned that fiction was 
just that fiction had this comment: 

"We now know that such people as Tom Sawyour, 

232 Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

Peter Rabbit and Robinson Cruiso never really 
lived at all. Many authors have made a good living 
out of fooling everyone." 

Suppose we read a few more book reports: 

* * 

Peter the goatherd asked Heidi to marry him. If you 
want to know what happened then, you must 
read "Heidi's Children/' 

Uncle Tom's Cabin is a good book for Simon Legree 
until the very last few pages. 


* * 


Robinson Crusoe met Black Friday in 1929. 

He knew she was likely to get into trouble and he 
wanted to help her. 

The Big X was a fine book, but I don't want to tell 
you any more or it will spoil it for you. 



The author then tells of going to visit his best friend 
in Boston, unknowing that he had been mur- 
dered decently, 

This book that I finally finished over the week end 
was awful. The writer takes always and longer 
to say nothing and it's not very important after 
all that. I have the opinion that no writer should 
waste his time, much less others by making use 
of unnecessary words he doesn't need to get his 
message across. 

234 Kids Sure Rite Funny I 

A plagiarist is a writer of plays. 

This is about the book I read. I don't remember it's 
exact name of the book but it tells about this 
boy that falls in love with this girl but then 
doesn't know what to do next. 

I have always wondered if Robin Hood and Riding 
Hood were relationed. 

Illiterature 235 

By titling his poem "Leaves of Grass" Walt Whitman 
let us know it is poetry that is coming. If the 
title says something impossible we can know 
it is poetry and get ready for it. 


:* < 

When I read a poem now, I can usually tell whether 
the poet has iambic, trochaic or antipestic feet. 

Poetry always comes out the same at the end. 


* * 

Five accents to the line is antiseptic poetry. 

One of Homer's best read poems is The Oddity. 

* * 

The Iliad is a doctor's book about sick people. 


Kids Sure Rite Funny! 

I believe it was Little Ada who was a characteress in 
Uncle Tom's Cabin. Since she was in fiction, she 
really did not exist. While I am thinking of it 
now, she possibly was not even the one in Un- 
cle Tom's Cabin which would make her even 
more of a fictional characteress. 

Jason was a very rich man with golden fleas. 

Kenilworth griped me intently. 


(What was the real name of Mark Twain?) 
O. Henry. 


I am not sure who wrote The Devil's Disciple, but 
this afternoon I will be where I can find out. 

I think the greatest need in books today is one to 
briefly review all of man's knowledge up to now 
so we can get on with learning new things. 

238 Kids Sure Rite Funnyl 

Romeo loved Juliet. Her balcony was famous. 

Early in his War and Peace, Tolstoy proved he had 
a very long drawn out tail. 


* * 

All stories have morals if we will just look for them 
hard enough. As a child, Goldilocks even taught 
me. She taught me not to eat other peoples food 
or get in other peoples beds.